Friday, April 21, 2017

Wrongfully Convicted Entitled to Refunds, Rules Supreme Court

People who are freed from prison when their convictions are reversed deserve a refund of what they paid in fees, court costs and restitution, the Supreme Court ruled Wednesday.

"They are entitled to be presumed innocent" once their convictions are thrown out, said Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and the state "has zero claim" to their money.

The 7-1 decision orders the state of Colorado to refund several thousand dollars to two defendants, a woman and a man, who were convicted of sex crimes but had their convictions reversed. Shannon Nelson, who was charged with abusing her children, was acquitted in a retrial, and the prostitution-related charges against Louis Madden were dropped.

In both instances, the state insisted on keeping the restitution they had paid.

UCLA law professor Stuart Banner and the UCLA Supreme Court Clinic appealed the case of Nelson v. Colorado to the high court last year, noting that Colorado was the only state that regularly refused to refund money taken from criminal defendants who were later exonerated.

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6 comments:

Anonymous said...

They got screwed with the convictions, so some unscrewing seems only fair.

Anonymous said...

lol proves it all about the money and has nothing to do with justice!

Anonymous said...

Who was the holdout? Anybody know?

Anonymous said...

What about their lost earnings and the pain & suffering they have experienced?

Anonymous said...

Maybe the judge in their case should be made to compensate them.

Anonymous said...

GINSBURG, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which ROBERTS,
C. J., and KENNEDY, BREYER, SOTOMAYOR, and KAGAN, JJ., joined.
ALITO, J., filed an opinion concurring in the judgment. THOMAS, J., filed
a dissenting opinion. GORSUCH, J., took no part in the consideration or
decision of the cases.