Instances of wrongful convictions, misconduct by some prosecutors, public concern over mass incarceration, and evidence of racial bias in our justice system have appropriately focused attention on the actions and decisions by prosecutors, who wield unsurpassed power in our justice system. But some prosecutors are changing the role of the modern prosecutor, focusing on crime prevention—not just prosecution—as a crime-fighting strategy; using alternatives to prosecution or incarceration to achieve more just and better criminal justice outcomes; implementing conviction-integrity units to make sure best practices are followed at the beginning of cases; and fair and unbiased post-conviction review of cases. What other preventative strategies could reduce implicit biases that may affect prosecutors’ decisions in cases? How can we better ensure that prosecutors are seeking just results, not simply convictions?
- 2016 Festival