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Ken Thompson: Strengthening Trust in the Criminal Justice System

Since assuming office in 2014, Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson has overturned 17 wrongful convictions as of this writing. His Conviction Review Unit, one of the largest in the country, has become a national blueprint for re-examining questionable cases. Here he discusses his ongoing efforts to strengthen the relationship between communities, law enforcement and the criminal justice system.

On carrying out justice in a diverse community: “Brooklyn is one of the greatest places in the world to live, and it is truly diverse. The criminal justice system often discriminates against the poor and [people of certain] races. I’m determined to keep people safe, but I also want to show that we have one standard of justice in Brooklyn.”

On creating the Conviction Review Unit: “The job of the DA is to correct [the] miscarriage of justice and to free [people] from prison who do not belong in prison. These wrongful convictions not only destroy the lives of those who are wrongfully convicted, but their families. They undermine the integrity of our criminal justice system.”