At 1:00 p.m. Eastern today, Professor Gross and Maurice Possley, the Registry’s lead writer/investigator and a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, will host a Twitter Q & A on their findings. The media and the public are invited to participate by following #NRE12 or #innocence or @exonerationlist.
The organization has also issued a news release, "Prosecutors and Police are Assisting with Exonerations at Record High Levels, New Data Shows," available in Adobe .pdf format. Here's the beginning:
In 2012, the number of cases in which prosecutors or police helped exonerate innocent defendants increased dramatically, according to a new report released today by the National Registry of Exonerations. Of 63 known exonerations in 2012, law enforcement initiated or cooperated in 34 or more than half (54 %).
Since 1989, prosecutors and police cooperated in 30 percent of the exonerations that the Registry has been able to identify (317 of 1050 exonerations in the national database at the end of last year). In 2012, for the first time, law enforcement cooperated in the majority of known exonerations. The previous high was 2008 when prosecutors or police assisted in 22 of 57 known exonerations (39 percent). In general, official cooperation is least likely among exonerations in capital murder and mass child sex abuse cases, and most likely in robbery and drug crime exonerations.
“We see a clear trend. Prosecutors and police are more open to re-investigating cases and clearing the names of innocent people who were wrongfully convicted,” said Michigan Law professor Samuel Gross, editor of the Registry and author of the “2012 Update” released today. “This is as it should be. The purpose of law enforcement is to seek truth and pursue justice. I’m glad to see they are now doing so more often after conviction, to help correct some of the terrible mistakes we sometimes make.”