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Michigan attorney general’s office receives grant for post-conviction DNA testing

Judge's gavel on table in office
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Judge's gavel on table in office

The Michigan attorney general’s Conviction Integrity Unit has received federal funding for post-conviction DNA testing that it can use to address some of the 1,700 pending claims of wrongful conviction in the state.

The U.S. Bureau of Justice Assistance awarded $550,000 to the unit to cover the cost of case reviews, locating evidence, DNA testing, and the hiring of additional staff and experts.

The unit has resulted in the exoneration of four people since its launch in 2019. This same grant also provided the integrity unit with over $730,000 in its first year.

The attorney general's office said the conviction integrity unit prioritizes DNA testing for "violent felony cases where the results of such testing might show actual innocence."

“These grant dollars not only provide our office with the financial resources needed to review cases, but they will also ensure a rigorous and detailed evaluation that keeps dangerous offenders out of Michigan communities, while providing justice to those wrongfully convicted,” said Attorney General Dana Nessel in a press release.

This Post Conviction Testing of DNA Evidence grant provides funding for local and state governments and institutes of higher education to revisit cases where DNA testing results are more likely to prove innocence. Past recipientsin Michigan include Benton Harbor, Flint, Macomb County, and Michigan State University.

Emily is a junior at the University of Michigan double majoring in Communications and Creative Writing.
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