DNA and Wrongful Convictions
Statement of New York State Bar Association President Vincent E. Doyle
DNA is a potent criminal justice tool. That is why the New York
State Bar Association supports the expansion of the state DNA
However, expanding the DNA database alone will not guarantee that the
innocent are exonerated and the guilty are convicted.
In 2009, the State Bar Association issued a report examining the
causes of wrongful convictions. It recommended: videotaping police
interrogations, improving police lineups, strengthening a
prosecutor’s obligation to turn over exculpatory evidence, and
giving those who pleaded guilty an opportunity to later seek a DNA
We urge Governor Cuomo and the Legislature to enact a comprehensive
package that addresses various causes of wrongful convictions.
Anything short of that will not protect the innocent or convict the
NEW YORK STATE BAR ASSOCIATION, ONE ELK STREET, ALBANY, NY 12207 PH: (518) 463-3200 SECURE FX: (518) 463-5993