- Larry Sims, freed by DNA, deserves to have name cleared even in death
- Houston city council considers $5 strip club fee to test rape kit backlog
- Va. DNA data support innocence of 33 convicted of sex crimes, study concludes
- Study: VA DNA tests show scale of bad convictions
- DNA tests could clear more, new study finds
Here's a link to the Urban Institute study (pdf) out of Virginia described in the last three items. That study opens up amazing possibilities: Should old sexual assault cases be reviewed more comprehensively to check for false convictions? So far DNA exonerations have occurred in the few instances where defendants persistently sought to prove their innocence over time, often for decades. The Urban Institute study is the first effort I know of to identify false convictions through an objective, external review that isn't specific to a given case. I've not had a chance to read the whole document yet, but from the media coverage it seems something of a breakthrough.
Finally, though Grits doesn't patronize strip clubs, I don't understand what besides misbegotten prudery justifies a specific $5 fee aimed at testing rape kits. Even sources cited by proponents of the fee say that "no study has authoritatively linked alcohol, sexually-oriented-businesses, and the perpetration of sexual violence." Don't punish one narrow category of businesses (and they're still businesses, employing people, generating taxes, etc.) for other people's sins. This, gentle readers, is what taxes are for.