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Legal Jesus

And on the third day, he blawged again.

Those gangbusting Chicago prosecutors going after those corrupt politicians and . . . student journalists?!?

Say what?

The New York Times reports on Cook County state’s attorney’s quest to keep pesky student journalism students from investigating potentially innocent inmates.  Have you ever heard a prosecutor’s office admit they were wrong??  Ever?

Well, Anita Alvarez doesn’t think there are enough hurdles for prisoners to contest their incarceration.  The highly respected Medill Innocence Project has long focused their journalism students on investigating the facts behind potentially wrongfully convicted individuals.  That super-safety-net-with-a-low-percentage-of-overturned-convictions is a little too audacious for Always-Right Alvarez.  She’s turned her sights on the students.

From the Times:

But as the Medill Innocence Project is raising concerns about another case, that of a man convicted in a murder 31 years ago, a hearing has been scheduled next month in Cook County Circuit Court on an unusual request: Local prosecutors have subpoenaed the grades, grading criteria, class syllabus, expense reports and e-mail messages of the journalism students themselves.

The grades!  The best defense is an aggressive offense!  Why defend our prosecution when we can tear down undergraduate students investigating facts?!  The state’s attorney’s office is claiming that they just want to find out if students are giving higher grades if the solicit exculpatory evidence.  Yeah, right.

Legal Jesus gives State’s Attorney Alvarez four LJ devils for her brazen attempt to infringe on journalistic liberties.



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