FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: MARK ELLIOTT
APRIL 22, 2015 727.215.9646
Florida Hardest Hit by FBI Report on Flawed Evidence and Testimony
Eleven Floridians Sentenced to Die in Cases with Erroneous Testimony and Flawed Evidence – One Executed Thus Far – According to Newly-Released Justice Department, FBI Findings
Floridians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty Call for Halt on Executions
(Tampa, FL – April 22, 2015) — Florida, the state that leads the nation with 25 exonerations of wrongfully convicted death row inmates, now also leads the nation in people condemned to death with flawed and erroneous evidence and testimony from FBI forensic experts.
A report released this week by the FBI and Justice Department highlights the continuing mistakes made by Florida’s death penalty program. Eleven of the 32 death penalty cases identified in the report are in Florida. The report was co-authored by the National Association for Criminal Defense Attorneys and the Innocence Project.
As a result, Floridians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty today are calling for an immediate moratorium on executions in the state, in light of this further evidence of wrongful convictions that result in sentences of death. FADP will soon be circulating a petition around the state.
“This is yet another nail in the coffin of Florida’s fatally flawed program for the death penalty,” said Executive Director of Floridians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty (FADP). “Instead of halting executions in the midst of overwhelming proof of errors, Florida has sped up executions to a record pace. This is why executions must be halted and Florida’s hugely expensive, failed government program must end. We are thankful that this investigation occurred as it helps to shine more light on our criminal justice system’s flaws.”
The findings reported that examiners’ testimony in at least 90 percent of trial transcripts analyzed by the FBI as part of its Microscopic Hair Comparison Analysis Review contained erroneous statements. According to their report, all but two of 28 FBI examiners offered faulty information. The review has shown that the FBI Examiners testified in cases in 41 states. Eleven of death penalty cases impact Florida residents: 10 are on death row. One has been executed.
Additional capital cases include Arizona, California, Indiana, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Texas, thus far.
Florida has the second largest death row in the nation (400+), behind California.
Floridians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty is a coalition of individuals and organizations united for restorative justice in Florida. For more information, visit www.fadp.org.