Saturday, May 5, 2012

Bulletin: The Robert Dewey case. Lessons of his exoneration from Jason Kreag of the Innocence Project: Wrongful Convictions Blog.

STORY: "The Robert Dewey exoneration and praise for the Colorado Attorney General's office: Colorado's wrongful conviction of Robert Dewey holds lessons," by Jason Kreag of the Innocence Project, published on the Wrongful Convictions Blog on May 5, 2012.

GIST: "Now that Dewey’s innocence has been established, four aspects of the case deserve attention. First, although prosecutors elected not to pursue the death penalty in his case, the crime certainly could have been prosecuted as a capital murder. It’s sobering to think what might have happened had he been sentenced to death. Second, all too often we are forced to close cases because crime scene evidence is no longer available. Fortunately, that is not a problem in Colorado because the state legislature passed a law in 2008 requiring law enforcement to preserve evidence. Colorado lawmakers should pat themselves on the back because these laws not only help to free the innocent but, as we saw in this case, can also help identify the real perpetrator. Third, Dewey’s case is a compelling example of the usefulness of having the prosecution and defense cooperate in post-conviction cases involving innocence claims. DNA evidence has helped to show many in law enforcement that the system doesn’t always get it right. In response, prosecutors around the country have started conviction integrity units like Colorado Attorney General John Suthers’ project to investigate cases where someone may have been wrongfully convicted.........Finally, while Colorado has done many things right with regard to uncovering wrongful convictions, it is lagging behind in one very important regard: compensation. While he was wrongly incarcerated for the past 18 years, Dewey lost out on some of the best years of his life. He missed out on opportunities to get an education and build a career. When he was released last week, he walked out of prison with literally nothing but the clothes on his back. While nothing could compensate Dewey for the years he’s lost, the state owes it to him to see that he doesn’t spend the remainder of his years penniless. My hope for him is that the state will agree and quickly pass a compensation statute to bring Colorado in line with the majority of the states that have compensation statutes for wrongfully convicted individuals."



I am monitoring this case. Keep your eye on the Charles Smith Blog for reports on developments.

The Toronto Star, my previous employer for more than twenty incredible years, has put considerable effort into exposing the harm caused by Dr. Charles Smith and his protectors - and into pushing for reform of Ontario's forensic pediatric pathology system. The Star has a "topic" section which focuses on recent stories related to Dr. Charles Smith. It can be found at:

Information on "The Charles Smith Blog Award"- and its nomination process - can be found at:

Please send any comments or information on other cases and issues of interest to the readers of this blog to:

Harold Levy: Publisher; The Charles Smith Blog.