State Attorney Dave Aronberg recently announced the creation of a Conviction Review Unit (CRU) within the Office of the State Attorney for the 15th Judicial Circuit, which covers all of Palm Beach County.
The purpose of the CRU is to identify, remedy and prevent wrongful convictions. “Wrongful convictions are contrary to our mission in this office, as they punish the innocent, undermine the integrity of our criminal justice system and threaten public safety by allowing the actual perpetrators to go free,” Aronberg said.
The CRU consists of dedicated attorneys, investigators and support staff who will conduct an initial screening process to identify plausible claims of innocence on behalf of convicted defendants.
For claims that merit review, the CRU then conducts a more detailed investigation. If the CRU identifies a wrongful conviction, the office will remedy the injustice, possibly by dismissing the underlying charges and convictions, and will take appropriate measures to prevent similar wrongful occurrences.
Anyone who believes that they are innocent of a crime that culminated in their criminal conviction should download and complete the petition for CRU review that is posted on the office’s web page, www.sa15.org. The petition may be completed by a representative on that person’s behalf. For questions about the CRU, call (561) 355-7179 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.