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America’s Grand Jury System: A Blueprint for Reform (NACDL News)
By Ivan J. Dominguez
On November 10, 2011, NACDL released a groundbreaking report on restoring and reforming the grand jury system — Evaluating Grand Jury Reform in Two States: The Case for Reform. This research reflects an in-depth study of grand jury reform in New York and Colorado. In conducting this study, researchers Erin Crites, Jon Gould and Colleen Shepard of the Center for Justice, Law & Society at George Mason University studied the experiences of prosecutors, defense attorneys, and retired judges. Four key reform recommendations emerge from the research: (1) defense representation in the grand jury room, (2) production of witness transcripts for the defense, (3) advance notice for witnesses to appear, and (4) the presentation of exculpatory evidence to the grand jury.
In order to return the grand jury system to the independent and legitimate function envisioned by the framers of the Constitution, much can be learned from the Colorado and New York systems. This report illustrate
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