Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Suing The DA - Should Prosecutors Be Immune?

Thanks to Doc Berman at Sentencing Law and Policy for pointing to this article about how prosecutors and immunity should not be an absolute.

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear the case of Thomas Goldstein, an ex-marine who was convicted of murdering his neighbor.

Goldstein served 24 years before his conviction was thrown out when the main witness against him was shown to have lied. That witness was a lifelong criminal who was given a deal on his own charges in exchange for testimony that Goldstein confessed to him in a jail cell. Goldstein alleges that the district attorney's office that prosecuted the case routinely used the testimony of so-called "jailhouse snitches" prosecutors knew or should have known weren't reliable.

Goldstein's case is unusual because he's not suing the prosecutor who convicted him, but John Van de Camp, the district attorney who supervised that prosecutor. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has allowed Goldstein's case to go forward, causing the U.S. Supreme Court to agree to hear it.



Anonymous said...

sounds loke some good common sense.djw

Anonymous said...

It happens all of the time. Nefarious prosecutors will to do ANYTHING to win a case. It does not matter to some of them whether the defendant is innocent. The prosecutors who use weak and unreliable 'testimony' or 'expert witnesses' should be held accountable and be put in the orange jump suits. Their acts ARE criminal. They have no consciense regarding the lives they ruin to promote their own. FELONS!!!