Wrongful Convictions – 6025
Wrongful Convictions is run in conjunction with the Innocence Project ofMinnesota. Its purpose is to educate students about the causes ofwrongful convictions as well as provide students with an opportunity towork on hypothetical courtroom situations in a classroom setting. Thereading materials and classroom discussion will cover such topics asunreliable eyewitness identifications, false confessions, jailhouseinformant testimony, ineffective assistance of counsel, governmentmisconduct, problematic forensic science and racial bias in the courtsystem. We will also discuss how DNA testing works and its application inthe courtroom. Students are expected to perform in-class exercises such asexamination of witnesses making eyewitness identification, challengingconfessions, cross-examine a cooperating witness and conduct voir dire onracial bias. Finally, students will be required to evaluate inmateapplications for assistance submitted to the Innocence Project of Minnesotaas part of their midterm sample assignment and final assignment.