Legal Aid Chief Testifies Before Council On The Central Park Five Case And The Need To Require Video-Taping Of Police Interrogations To Prevent Wrongful Convictions

The Legal Aid Society's Attorney-in-Chief, Steven Banks, testified before the New York City Council yesterday in support of a proposed Council resolution calling on the City to settle the civil lawsuit brought by the five young men who, as children, were wrongfully conflicted of raping the Central Park jogger based on false confessions obtained by law enforcement.

Banks noted that more than 40 percent of the wrongful convictions in New York State proven by post-conviction DNA testing, as occurred in the Central Park Five case, are the result of false convictions. He added that New York State has had more documented and proven false confessions than any State except Illinois. Banks told the Council that, for many years, The Legal Aid Society has supported the mandatory recording of police interrogations to prevent such wrongful convictions, and that the Central Park Five case is a tragic illustration of the urgent need for this requirement.