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Recent Findings

As of February, 2016:


Record Breaking Year: 2015 was a record breaking year. We know of 149 exonerations in 2015.  The next highest total was 139 in 2014.

Conviction Integrity Units: 2015 saw a substantial increase in the number of Conviction Integrity Units (CIUs) - units in prosecutors' offices that review and investigate post-conviction claims of innocence. There were 24 CIUs in the United States in 2015, double the number in 2013 and quadruple the number in 2011.
CIUs played a role in 58 exonerations in 2014. Overall, CIUs have helped secure 151 exonerations from 2003 through 2015; nearly three-quarters occurred in 2014 and 2015 (109/151). But the performance of these CIUs has been highly variable. Almost 90% of all CIU exonerations (134/151) occurred in just four counties.
Guilty Pleas: Guilty pleas account for more than 95% of criminal convictions in the U.S., but only 276 of the 1,740 exonerations in the Registry, about 16%.  Recently we have seen an increase in guilty-plea exonerations: 65 exonerations in 2015 - 44% - were for convictions based on guilty pleas, more than any previous year.