Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Confessed and Exonerated

Kevin Fox was recently released from jail after DNA evidence exonerated him on that he had sexually assaulted and murdered his 3-year-old daughter. The evidence against him? A confession. The Chicago Tribune has a number of articles on the case, many of which revolve around the most obvious question: What could cause someone to confess to something he didn't d0--especially something as heinous as the brutal murder of your own daughter? The fact is that some people do falsely confess. This is certainly not the first DNA exoneration in a confession case. Sometimes, a confession may be the result of police misconduct. Sometimes it is just the overwhelming of an individual's will after unrelenting interrogation. Either way, I think it's far past the time for police to start videotaping all interrogations. Only then can the jury truly appreciate what led an individual to "confess," and determine if that confession is reliable.

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