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Marion County's Conviction Integrity Unit now reviewing wrongful conviction claims

Through a petition process, the CIU reviews claims of innocence
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Posted at 10:18 AM, Apr 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-12 08:16:19-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Those who believe they’ve been wrongly convicted in Marion County can now formally submit a claim to the Marion County Prosecutor’s Conviction Integrity Unit (CIU).

The CIU was first announced in December by Marion County Prosecutor Ryan Mears. As the first of its kind in Indiana, the CIU invites Marion County residents to apply for a fresh review of their cases that could challenge the marks on their criminal records.

"As always, the goal of our office is to seek justice. And sometimes that means first looking back, in order to move our community forward," Prosecutor Mears stated in a release to WRTV. "I am confident that this new unit will work to uncover historical injustices and will make sure that we are doing everything in our power to prevent such wrongdoings with devastating impacts to our community.”

MORE | Prosecutor's office looking to undo wrongful convictions in Marion County |

Although it is part of the Marion County Prosecutor's Office, the CIU acts independently. An investigator and support staff will review each claim and consult an independent review panel composed of legal experts from outside MCPO.

For those interested in filing a petition for the CIU's review, an inquiry form must be completed on the prosecutor's website first.

Then, if the petition is eligible, the CIU will do a preliminary review that involves lawyers on staff. If the unit determines the case needs a reinvestigation, the CIU initiates a completely new investigation. You can learn more about the process of claiming your innocence in the "Frequently Asked Questions" on the prosecutor's website.

In its announcement, the MCPO stated:

"The CIU will make a vigorous effort to identify and investigate cases that resulted in wrongful convictions. The unit will also make recommendations about ways to improve training, investigations, and prosecution practices to ensure the integrity of future convictions. This process ensures that justice is continuing to be sought even after a conviction is final."

If a petitioner does not have access to the website, a request for review can be mailed via USPS to:
Marion County Prosecutor’s Office
Attn: Conviction Integrity Unit
251 East Ohio Street, Suite 160
Indianapolis, IN 46204