- Improving the quality of defense counsel available for indigent defendants.
- Implementing procedures to improve eyewitness identification
- Making recommendations to eliminate improper interrogations and to protect against false confessions.
- Reforming the standards for collection, preservation and storage of evidence.
- Improving crime lab reliability.
- Improving attorney practices and accountability
- Adequately compesating the wrongfully convicted.
- Implementing writ training.
- Establishing local, "home rule" protocol for the prevention of wrongful convictions.
The group has no formal authority, but Hervey's press release pledged an action-oriented agenda: "Although we applaud all previous studies and dialogue," it declared, "it is now time to act and move for reform. While more government does not necessarily mean better government, reflection and willingness to improve does respond to the needs of our system and our citizens."
The press release provides no detail regarding exactly what the new "unit" will do, besides "move for reform." But it's nice to see the CCA being proactive on a topic about which in the past they've been recalcitrant. I'll see what else I can find out about the entity in the coming days.
UPDATE: Here's the initial Dallas News coverage.