Incentives Baked into the Criminal Justice System & Wrongful Conviction

Location: Augusta Room
Date: Sat, April 13
Time: 9:45 AM - 11:00 AM

The criminal justice system contains a series of decision points that ultimately dictate life and liberty. Many decisions that are made, from the street stop to arrest to conviction, are heavily influenced by incentives, some conscious, others implicit. In the age of mass incarceration, a massive network of interconnected quotas and inducements has emerged that have dramatic consequences for the innocent. A recent example of epic proportions and with devastating consequences was revealed in New York City through a series authored by Shaun King - a class action lawsuit exposed a crushing number of false arrests and summonses over a seven-year period through an unofficial quota system.  One of the young victims, Pedro Hernandez, who was falsely arrested 7 times, spent two years at Rikers Island before his innocence was revealed. This panel will feature Shaun King and Pedro Hernandez, describing New York City's quota system, and more broadly explore our incentives-based criminal justice system and its impact on the innocent.