Flashpoint Live: Is wrongful conviction an anomaly or epidemic?

August 12, 2019 - 7:28 pm

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — This week on Flashpoint: Host and KYW Newsradio community affairs reporter Cherri Gregg asks the burning questions about wrongful convictions in front of a live studio audience as part of the Philly Podcast Festival.  

In recent days, John Miller was set free after more than 21 years behind bars. His entire case was based on the testimony of one witness — which turned out to be a lie. 

Chester Holman, Terrance Lewis, and six others have also been exonerated since Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner took office. Before that, names like Shaurn Thomas and Anthony Wright dominated headlines over the years as others were set free following decades of wrongful conviction. 

So, is wrongful conviction an anomaly? Or is it an epidemic in Philadelphia?  

Patricia Cummings, Conviction Integrity and Special Investigations Unit supervisor for the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office, joins Marissa Bluestine, former executive director of the Pennsylvania Innocence Project — who is now assistant director of the Quattrone Center for the Fair Administration of Justice at the University of Pennsylvania — and Bradley Bridge, an assistant defender at the Defender Association of Philadelphia with more than 20 years of experience helping individuals get post-conviction relief. 

In addition, the audience hears a one-on-one interview with exoneree Anthony Wright. He spent 25 years behind bars for a rape and murder that he did not commit. Cleared by DNA evidence, Wright endured a second trial and was eventually found not guilty by a jury. He sued the city of Philadelphia and won.

Flashpoint airs every Saturday at 9:30 p.m. and Sunday at 8:30 a.m. on KYW Newsradio 1060AM. It also airs at 5 a.m. Sundays on B101FM and WPHP 1210AM, and at 6 a.m. on WOGL 98.1 and TDY 96.5. 

Subscribe to the Flashpoint podcast via the Apple podcast app, RADIO.COM or others apps where you get your podcast by searching "Flashpoint KYW."