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Saturday, August 21, 2004

No Big Deal, Just 40 Years

In this slightly confusing article, the CNN reports that a man who was convicted of a crime he did not commit using testimony extracted under torture has been released from prison after serving 40 years of his life sentence. I call it confusing because I am not sure how a Texas inmate could have kept escaping from other states' prisons.
Many times he escaped from facilities in other states -- including South Carolina, Louisiana and Mississippi -- only to be recaptured each time. He was returned to the Texas prison system last year.
Be that as it may, I am happy Robert Carroll Coney is finally a free man. However, the questions linger. Questions such as, how many people like him are still behind bars? What percentage of cases does our system of criminal justice mishandle? How many true criminals walk free as a result of somebody else taking the heat for what they did?

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