Damico & Stockstill, Attorneys at Law

Study finds black Americans are more likely to get convicted


Alarming stats recently published by the National Registry of Exonerations shows that the disturbing trend of racism in the United States is continuing with more black individuals wrongfully convicted than any other race. The statistics, according to the "Race and Wrongful Convictions in the United States" report show that as many as 1,800 defendants were framed for their crimes, a majority of whom were black. The report included statistics dating back from 1989 until present.

Additional statistics are also alarming concerning violent crimes and the ratio of blacks involved in the crimes. African Americans make up only 13 percent of the United States population but account for half of all exonerated for murder. This is more than seven times than for whites. These wrongfully convicted black individuals spend, on average, over 14 years in prison for their "crimes."

In addition, law enforcement clearly plays a role in these statistics, as black defendants were 22 percent more likely to be victim of police misconduct than whites. In addition, on average they had to wait three years longer than white counterparts. While we all would like to think that the justice system is fair and in place to convict the guilty and protect the innocent, that is not always the case.

These statistics show that now, more than ever, it is crucial to face the courts with a strong defense team. In 2016 there were 166 exonerations alone, the third consecutive year setting the record, twice as many as in 2011 and the highest since the studies began in 1989.

Source: Huffington Post, "Innocent Blacks More Likely Than Whites To Be Wrongfully Convicted," By Matt Ferner, Mar. 7, 2017

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