In Which You Discover Only What The State Thinks You Should
Under the United States Constitution, prosecutors have an obligation to turn over potentially exculpatory evidence — whether it is evidence that is directly favorable to the accused and unfavorable to the government’s case, or evidence that undermines the credibility of the government’s witnesses.
But, as our kind host frequently discusses, there’s a broad gulf between what shouldhappen and what does happen in the criminal justice system. Prosecutors withholdexculpatory evidence all the time, usually without consequence.
Given human nature, the cultural pressures of law enforcement, and the lack of supervision in some prosecutorial agencies, such behavior by “rogue prosecutors” probably doesn’t surprise readers of The Agitator. What might surprise you is that the suppression of exculpatory evidence is sometimes systematic and based on written policy from the highest levels of local government.