The Ohio Newsroom, NPR and Columbia Journalism Investigations examined hundreds of documents and files, and interviewed dozens of criminal justice experts, legal scholars, judges and defense attorneys to identify claims of prosecutorial misconduct in Ohio and understand their impact on the justice system.
The findings are a first-ever attempt to pull back the curtain of anonymity shielding Ohio prosecutors from public scrutiny when appeals courts affirm claims of improper conduct.
When prosecutors make mistakes at trial, judges can call that improper conduct a harmless error, saying it didn’t impact the verdict. But some experts say that legal doctrine has gone too far.
A first-of-its-kind analysis of Ohio appellate cases with allegations of withheld evidence is a window into what many experts consider a largely invisible national problem.
About 100 prosecutors across Ohio violated standards meant to protect a defendant's civil rights in criminal trials, an investigation by NPR and its reporting partners found. Some did so repeatedly.