Texas Court of Appeals Creates Integrity Unit - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Texas Court of Appeals Creates Integrity Unit

Making sure the innocent are not convicted is one of the goals of a new unit created in Texas.

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals will work with the governor's office and the Innocence Project and it has several goals.

The Texas Criminal Justice Integrity Unit will try to improve police interrogations, eyewitness testimony as evidence, and reliability in the crime lab.

But the first step to all of that will have to be taken in the Texas capitol. Texas Senator Kel Seliger of Amarillo says, "it's a good first step to address a challenge and concern. We have people spending time in jail who have been proven not guilty."

Since 2001, 33 men have been exonerated using DNA testing.

Just yesterday, a local convicted murderer appealed to the court for a DNA test, which had been denied several times before.

He maintains he was wrongfully convicted.

One local attorney who is involved with the integrity unit says cases like that could be influenced by this unit.

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