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Wrongful Conviction

Conviction Integrity Program

The Conviction Integrity Program is an innovative initiative created by District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., in March of 2010.  The Program is comprehensive in scope, and is unique in purpose: not only does it address claims of actual innocence; it also seeks to prevent wrongful convictions from occurring.  The Program has three components: a Conviction Integrity Committee, a Conviction Integrity Chief, and an outside Conviction Integrity Policy Advisory Panel.

The Conviction Integrity Committee is comprised of ten senior members of the District Attorney’s staff, who review practices and policies related to training, case assessment, investigation, and disclosure obligations, with a focus on potential errors such as eyewitness misidentifications and false confessions.  The Conviction Integrity Chief coordinates the activities of the Committee and leads all re-investigation of any cases that present a meaningful claim of actual innocence.  The Conviction Integrity Policy Advisory Panel is comprised of leading criminal justice experts, including legal scholars and former prosecutors, who advise the Office on national best practices and evolving issues in the area of wrongful convictions.

Applying to the Conviction Integrity Program

In order for the Conviction Integrity Program to carry out a preliminary review of a conviction, the following prerequisites must be met:

  • The conviction must have been in New York County;
  • There must be a claim of actual innocence.  The Conviction Integrity Program does not review non-innocence related claims, such as those concerning procedural errors at trial.

If you wish to have a conviction evaluated, please write us a letter and include the following information:

  • Defendant’s name
  • Indictment or docket number
  • Evidence of innocence
  • How we would be able to look further into that evidence

Letter claims can be sent to the attention of the Conviction Integrity Program at the New York County District Attorney’s Office, One Hogan Place, New York, NY 10013.  If you have any questions, please contact us at 212-335-4016.

Note:  If the defendant is currently represented by counsel, all communication with the Conviction Integrity Program must be through the defendant’s attorney.