The question of whether DNA evidence should change the way we look at innocent until proven guilty has been heavily on my mind. We’ve always been taught that a person deserves a fair trial among a jury of their peers to face the charges they are accused of…a fair justice system.
The introduction of DNA evidence over 20 years ago has changed the playing field when it comes to convicting or exonerating a person of a crime. Since DNA is unique to each person it’s hard to dispute the results of the test.
Although there can be a defense to DNA evidence such as mishandling or performing the test wrong it’s hard to refute the test results. If the justice system put in place a structured, secured method of testing and handling DNA evidence it could save taxpayers millions by shortening the trial process.
DNA Evidence = Guilty
How can you dispute that fact when a prosecutor holds off on an arrest for a murder until they received the test results? This is exactly what happened in a local case involving a police office that was on duty when he strangled a young woman who was due to have his baby within weeks.
Saginaw County Prosecutor, Mike Thomas tells a local reporter as soon as they received a positive match on the DNA test results they immediately acted by arresting Buena Vista Police Officer Kevin Bluew. Bluew who is married, is accused of killing his girlfriend who was 37 weeks pregnant with his baby at a local police gun range while on duty. The beautiful life of Jenny Webb and her unborn baby boy was cut short and the evidence obviously shows Officer Bluew was involved.
Why should the family of Jenny be put through the rigors of a trial? Why should Michigan taxpayers fit the bill for this guy to have a “fair” trial? If the DNA evidence proves positive, let a judge review it, approve it and lock the guy up!
DNA Evidence = Innocent
DNA evidence is a solid way to get a conviction but it’s also a solid way to reverse or eliminate a conviction. The Innocence Project is proof of that. They state:
There have been 273 post-conviction DNA exonerations in United States history.
The facts presented on the website showing innocent people being exonerated with DNA evidence are staggering. If this evidence is solid, then the question is raised again…why are we still holding jury trials when there is undisputed DNA evidence?
Consider the conviction of Cornelius Dupree which was overturned in Texas and Dupree was exonerated of a rape and robbery he did not commit. Cornelius served 30 years in prison before the evidence set him free again proofing how powerful this evidence is. This man spent 30 years of his life behind bars for a crime he did not commit not to mention the hoards of wasted money housing and prosecuting an innocent man.
This leaves us with one question….
Should DNA Evidence Change Innocent Until Proven Guilty?