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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 118640 Find in a Library
Title: Crime and Punishment in Dallas
Journal: ABA Journal  Volume:75  Dated:(July 1989)  Pages:52-54
Author(s): R L Fricker
Date Published: 1989
Page Count: 3
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article focuses on the "win at any cost" philosophy in the district attorney's office in Dallas (Texas).
Abstract: In light of the recent release of Randall Dale Adams, a man wrongly convicted of the murder of a Dallas police officer and released as a result of a 1988 movie "The Thin Blue Line", attention has been centered on the district attorney's office of Dallas County (Texas). This office has a reputation of weak cases and prosecutors winning by any available means. Details of the conviction and subsequent release of Randall Adams show that the the district attorney suppressed evidence regarding the case. Earlier criticism revolved around a policy that an accused person with two prior prison terms would be declared a habitual criminal and, if convicted, given a minimum of 25 years in prison, regardless of the offense or the time span between offenses. This policy has resulted in inflexibility in plea agreements and overcrowded prisons. Other cases of inept investigations, questionable convictions, and subsequent releases are discussed. There is a call for radical reform in the Dallas district attorney's office.
Main Term(s): Professional misconduct
Index Term(s): District attorneys; Professional conduct and ethics; Texas
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