Innocence Project

Hard-charging prosecutor, or serial killer?

The preponderance of evidence points to the latter:

During Britt’s tenure, the report found, a defendant in Robeson County was almost 100 times more likely to be sentenced to death than a randomly selected murder defendant in the United States. At one point, one of every 25 people on death row in the United States had been prosecuted by Britt.

Britt often cut corners to win. Appellate courts found that Britt committed misconduct in 14 of his capital cases, the new report shows. His offenses included hiding evidence that might have proven defendants innocent and making inflammatory and improper statements to jurors.

And yet, with all the evidence compiled against this man, he never spent one minute behind bars for his crimes against humanity. Here was an opportunity to forward the cause of justice, by punishing blatant prosecutorial misconduct, but we flinched. Whether it was "maintaining decorum" or actual complicity in his crimes, it doesn't really matter. The injustice stands, and (to a certain extent) survives, in the hearts and minds of many doing that job today.

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