Postconviction Prosecutorial Duties

7 Pages Posted: 13 Feb 2018  

Peter A. Joy

Washington University in St. Louis - School of Law

Kevin C. McMunigal

Case Western Reserve University School of Law

Date Written: February 7, 2018

Abstract

A prosecutor’s ethical duty to disclose exculpatory information prior to conviction has long been recognized. The wrongful convictions revealed through the work of the original Innocence Project and its offspring around the country have focused attention in recent years on the ethical obligations of prosecutors who learn of exculpatory information after a conviction. Must a prosecutor disclose such information? When a prosecutor learns of exculpatory information after a conviction, must the prosecutor investigate further to determine whether the defendant was wrongfully convicted? Must the prosecutor seek to remedy a conviction if the exculpatory evidence is sufficiently strong? In this legal ethics column, we review how the American Bar Association (ABA) and various state ethics authorities have answered these three questions.

Keywords: ethics, legal ethics, professional responsibility, Model Rule 3.8, postconviction, prosecutor, prosecutor duty

JEL Classification: K14, K19, K39, K41, K42

Suggested Citation

Joy, Peter A. and McMunigal, Kevin C., Postconviction Prosecutorial Duties (February 7, 2018). 32 Criminal Justice 53 (Winter 2018); Washington University in St. Louis Legal Studies Research Paper No. 18-02-02. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3119995 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3119995

Peter A. Joy (Contact Author)

Washington University in St. Louis - School of Law ( email )

Campus Box 1120
St. Louis, MO 63130
United States
313-935-6445 (Phone)

Kevin C. McMunigal

Case Western Reserve University School of Law ( email )

11075 East Boulevard
Cleveland, OH 44106-7148
United States
2163683613 (Phone)
2163682086 (Fax)

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