Massachusetts – A lab technician confessed to tampering with evidence throughout her nine years of working on the job.
On last Tuesday, prosecutors motioned to throw out 21,000 convictions after police chemist Annie Dookhan falsified tests.
According to the The American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts, 21,587 cases had been recommended for dismissal.
This would be the largest dismissal of criminal convictions in U.S. history.
“Today is a major victory for justice and fairness, and for thousands of people in the commonwealth who were unfairly convicted of drug offenses,” Matthew Segal, legal director of the ACLU of Massachusetts,
In 2013, Dookhan pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice, perjury and tampering with evidence. She was sentenced to three years in prison and was paroled last year.
Anthony Benedetti, chief counsel of the Committee for Public Counsel Services, said some of the defendants lost their jobs or homes and some have been deported.
“In many respects the damage has been done,” Benedetti said. “Justice delayed is justice denied.”
Some of these cases go back 13 years. In which for many who have already served time. They cannot go back and “un-do” the time they lost.
It took the ACLU of Massachusetts 5 years to get these cases dismissed.