Experts agree that around three and five percent of capital crime convictions are wrongful. These cases are often reflected in national news stories and are high profile trials. But even when the false charges are dropped, it’s essential to remember that these wrongful allegations and convictions can cause enormous emotional, financial, and social turmoil for the falsely accused and their loved ones. And false accusations aren’t isolated incidents. Studies show that between three and five percent of capital crime convictions are wrongful. This is disturbing, but what about false criminal charges for minor crimes such as theft, drug possession, or DWI? Texas is one of the toughest states regarding DWI penalties, and a new study reveals that the percentage of false accusations for crimes like this might be even higher.
University of Pennsylvania criminologist Charles Loeffler realized that no estimate existed for the number of wrongful convictions for non-capital crimes such as DWI. Taking into account convictions ranging from serious charges to minor charges, Loeffler made a study of his own with help from other researchers from The University of Pennsylvania.
In one of the first estimates of its kind for the criminal-justice population as a whole, the researchers surveyed almost 3,000 state prisoners in Pennsylvania and found that six percent of the inmates reported being wrongfully convicted, according to Penn Today.
While the researchers agree that they cannot be certain of the truthfulness of every person surveyed, they are merely trying to report an estimate of how many people might be serving significant jail time all because of a false accusation.
And false accusations can negatively impact your life even if you’re not facing jail time.
AllLaw reports that while false imprisonment is one of the most common civil claims when it comes to people suing for wrongful convictions, the other two most common claims are based on defamation of character and malicious prosecution.
Law.FreeAdvice defines malicious prosecution as prosecution without probable cause. These false convictions can stem from mistakes made by the police, inaccurate reports from witnesses, racial discrimination, and more. Malicious prosecution can result in negative outcomes such as loss of employment and inability to take out a loan, not to mention embarrassment and mental trauma. If you’re in the wrong place at the wrong time, you could quite easily be falsely accused of crimes such as DWI or drug possession and face many repercussions that can throw your life out of order. But it doesn’t have to be that way. What many people don’t know is that they have the right to an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help get charges dropped and help pursue compensation for the injustice.
Don’t settle with living with the consequences of a false or inaccurate accusation! If you or a loved one has been falsely accused of a DWI or other criminal charge, you have options! You don’t have to battle these unfair charges alone or resign yourself to live with the consequences. If you or someone you know is facing criminal charges in Texas, call Tijerina Law Firm at (956) 261-5609 or contact us online today!
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