82 N.C. L. Rev. 891 (2003-2004)
The Problem of False Confessions in the Post-DNA World

handle is hein.journals/nclr82 and id is 905 raw text is: THE PROBLEM OF FALSE CONFESSIONS IN
THE POST-DNA WORLD*
STEVEN A. DRIZIN' & RICHARD A. LEo
In recent years, numerous individuals who confessed to and were
convicted of serious felony crimes have been released from
prison-some after many years of incarceration-and declared
factually innocent, often as a result of DNA tests that were not
possible at the time of arrest, prosecution, and conviction. DNA
testing has also exonerated numerous individuals who confessed to
serious crimes before their cases went to trial. Numerous others
have been released from prison and declared factually innocent in
cases that did not involve DNA tests, but instead may have
occurred because authorities discovered that the crime never
occurred or that it was physically impossible for the (wrongly)
convicted defendant to have committed the crime, or because the
true perpetrator of the crime was identified, apprehended, and
convicted. In this Article, we analyze 125 recent cases of proven
interrogation-induced false confessions     (i.e., cases in  which
indisputably innocent individuals confessed to crimes they did not
commit) and how these cases were treated by officials in the
criminal justice system.
This Article has three goals. First, we provide and analyze basic
demographic, legal, and case-specific descriptive data from these
125 cases. This is significant because this is the largest cohort of
interrogation-induced false confession cases ever identified and
studied in the research literature.
*The authors' names are listed in alphabetical order. Professors Drizin and Leo would
like to thank the many law students for their invaluable research assistance in this project,
including Beth Colgan, Kate Shank, Masato Ishibashi, Colleen Ryan, Jason Christopher,
Alice Decker, Megan Chmura, and Eric Jehl. A special thanks is due to Kylie Pak for her
assistance in both researching and cite checking the Article. We would also like to thank
Welsh White for helpful comments on an earlier draft.
**Clinical Professor of Law, Northwestern University School of Law. B.A., 1983,
Haverford College; J.D., 1986, Northwestern University School of Law.
***Associate Professor of Criminology, Law and Society, and Associate Professor of
Psychology and Social Behavior, University of California, Irvine. B.A., 1985, University
of California, Berkeley; M.A., 1989, University of Chicago; J.D., 1994, University of
California, Berkeley; Ph.D., 1994, University of California, Berkeley.

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