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National Judicial Institute – National Programs Descriptions

Preventing Wrongful Convictions

Overview


This seminar focused on the causes of wrongful convictions, exploring the common contributors to wrongful convictions, highlighting potential problems, and determining the appropriate judicial response.

Objectives

The objectives of this seminar were to educate judges about wrongful convictions, help them to identify potential problems as they arise in the courtroom and explore the role of the judge in preventing wrongful convictions.


Summary

Senior judges and legal academics led this seminar, which also brought together persons with lived experience of wrongful convictions to discuss the impact on their lives. Sessions to set the stage included discerning the scope of the problem, the social context of wrongful convictions, and the overrepresentation of Indigenous people among wrongfully convicted. Practical sessions to assist judges in addressing potential problems included assessing credibility and reliability with respect to statements, confessions, perception memory and eyewitness identification, as well as a panel on flawed forensic evidence. Working in small groups, judges learned practical skills to help them effectively manage forensic scientific evidence.

Date

Oct 1st -
Oct 2nd 2018

Number of Participants

38

Keywords