CRJ 514 Resource Reading

The article is have selected for review is the “Wrongful Conviction: Perceptions of Criminal Justice Professionals Regarding the Frequency of Wrongful Conviction and the Extent of System Errors” (Ramsey & Frank, 2007, as cited in Spohn & Hemmens, 2012, pp. 83-107). This article is a reflection of how people who are not guilty are convicted of crimes they did not commit and end up serving a jail term. Even though there is a system in place to help exonerate those who are wrongfully convicted of crimes, it is regrettable that we can still find some people in jail serving sentence for a crime they are innocent. It gives a reflection of the lack of effectiveness of the criminal justice system. The innocent criminals may end up spending months or even years in jail before the ruling is overturned. The authors of this article did an excellent job explaining the impacts of false conviction of innocent suspects. As mentioned in the article, one the consequences are the mental and physical torture that the innocent is subjected to in jail, while the actual criminal is walking free outside, with a possibility of committing more serious crimes.

When one is falsely accused of committing a crime and gets convicted, people’s belief in the criminal justice system is affected. One of the most horrible moments that I have witnessed is where a person is convicted of a crime and sentenced to the death penalty. Some years later, it is found that the person was not guilty of the accusations. That can be a devastating situation for the families and friends, not to mention to the executed individual. As a result of this, I believe that the criminal justice system must be thorough with their investigation and ensure that they leave no stone unturned. Suspects should not be convicted on an incomplete investigation. Wrongful convictions often occur due to falsified evidence or framing of individuals. This is a culture that must be corrected because everyone deserves a fair trial to prove their innocence. Punishing innocent people can encourage crime in society.

This article clearly differentiates between a guilty individual and a wrongfully convicted person. The authors provide an in-depth explanation of the importance of doing a thorough investigation of any criminal case to ensure that the perpetrators are brought to book. This will actually minimize the chances of convicting the wrong people.  The authors did a great work to explain what wrongful convictions are, how they do happen in the criminal justice system, and also offer recommendations on the steps that the criminal justice system can take to help eliminate such kind of incidences. This article is an excellent source of information for the criminal justice department to improve their services and rise in their duties.