News

Bill: Even a Plea Deal Should Allow DNA Testing

Bill:  Even a Plea Deal Should Allow DNA Testing

Photo: Newsradio WTAX

A measure that would allow some prisoners to have DNA evidence in their case tested after they agree to a plea deal is making its way through the statehouse.

Convicts who plead guilty even though they’re innocent sometimes do so because of factors like police coercion, or simply not wanting to spend their life in prison, says John Hanlon, who heads the Illinois Innocence Project.

“Some people who are innocent take the deal, so to speak, and then later come to be aware of evidence that could have been tested and should be tested and that’s what this bill is all about. It’s just in the name of fairness, just asking for access to the evidence to test it,” said Hanlon.

He’s supporting a measure that would allow defendants who plead guilty the chance to petition judges to have DNA evidence tested. The measure awaits a House vote.

Recent Headlines

in Local

Judge Considers Whether to Dismiss Illinois Head-Injury Suit

ihsa

Cook County Judge Leroy Martin Jr. heard oral arguments Friday.

in Local

Ex-Washington Mayor Don Gronewald Dead at 83

wtax 011015

Gronewald, mayor of the central Illinois town from 1989 to 2001, died Tuesday at OSF Saint Francis Medical Center in Peoria.

in Local

Iran Deal Gives Durbin a Shot at Political Redemption

dickdurbin2

Dick Durbin leading effort to get votes in favor of nuclear deal with Iran.

in Local

Munger Under Fire Over Outgoing State Funds

Biss and Munger

State Senator Daniel Biss says the comptroller’s office is having trouble following court ordered payments to various groups.

in Local

Legionnaires’ Disease Sickens 23 and Kills 2 in Quincy VA Home

Quincy VA Home

The Illinois Department of Public Health is taking steps to prevent more people in a Quincy veterans’ home from contracting Legionnaires’ disease.