Professionals Cited

The Christian Science Monitor Quotes Paul Charlton on Flawed Prosecutions

January 12, 2018

The Christian Science Monitor quoted Paul Charlton in a January 12 article titled “Cliven Bundy Case: How Big a Problem is Prosecutorial Misconduct?” The article examines the question of how often prosecutorial misconduct occurs. According to the article, if prosecutors are unsure whether a piece of evidence is permissible or important to the defense, they can give it to a judge to make a ruling. Through their close work with law enforcement, prosecutors often hold most of the evidence in a case. Whether they choose to disclose it – either straight to the defendant, or to a judge – is entirely up to them.

Mr. Charlton, who spent 10 years as a US attorney in Arizona, says that reconciling their position as both the opponent of the defense and perhaps their most important source of information can be difficult, particularly over the course of a long case. “You become familiar with the facts and embrace a certain narrative,” Mr. Charlton adds. When “you are weighing whether you should turn over that evidence, the risk is you’re making that decision in some way to protect the case as opposed to providing the defendant with the opportunity to put on the best defense.”

The full article can be read at The Christian Science Monitor.