Texas bills target wrongful convictions - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Texas bills target wrongful convictions

A brief look at some of the bills and proposals before the Texas Legislature that advocates say will help avoid wrongful convictions:

DNA testing: Some police chiefs want to take DNA samples from anyone arrested as suspects in crimes ranging as low as mid-level misdemeanors. Opposed by civil liberties groups as a massive invasion of privacy. The state already collects DNA after felony convictions and from suspects in violent crimes. The new plan would take more than 800,000 samples per year.

Innocence Commission: create a state panel to investigate why wrongful convictions happened. Supported by Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson.

Eyewitness identification: sets standards for how police conduct lineups and gather eyewitness testimony to ensure it is accurate.

Record interrogations: require electronic recording of interrogations of suspects in custody.

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