Prosecutorial Misconduct: Convicting the Innocent
Professor James R. Elkins College of Law
West Virginia University|Fall|2016|



Steven Barnes

In 1989, 23-year-old Marcy, New York resident Steven Barnes was wrongfully convicted of the 1985 rape and murder of Kimberly Simon, 16, also of Marcy. Barnes spent almost 20 years in prison before the Innocence Project secured his exoneration in 2009 through DNA evidence. His conviction was based on questionable eyewitness identifications and questionable forensic science. In 2008, DNA testing obtained by the Innocence Project proved his innocence.

Contributing Causes of the Wrongful Conviction: Eyewitness Misidentification, Jailhouse Snitch, False or Misleading Forensic Science, Perjury/False Accusation


Steven Barnes Another Talk about His Case
[44:14 mins.] [2012 New York State Wrongful Convictions Conference]

Assigned Reading

Steven Barnes
[The Innocence Project]

Steven Barnes Released from Prison
[The Innocence Project]

National Registry of Exonerations

Audio Documentary (and supplemental videos)

"We Were All Incarcerated"
[56:00 mins.] [alt. posting]

On the Status of the Investigation
[1:43 mins.]

More on the Status of the Current Investigation
[2:10 mins.]

Q&A with Steve Barnes and Sylvia Bouchard at the premiere of the documentary "We Were All Incarcerated" [4:45 mins.] Pt2 [5:02 mins.] Pt3 [4:16 mins.] Pt4 [4:51 mins.] Pt5 [3:17 mins.] Pt6 [2:47 mins.]

The Producer Talks About the Documentary "We Were All Incarcerated"
[3:48 mins.]

The Producer Talks About the Documentary
[3:54 mins.]

Supplemental Videos

Innocence Project Interview
[2:35 mins.] [Steven Barnes was freed Nov. 23, 2008, after spending nearly two decades in prison for a murder he didn't commit. He sat down with the Innocence Project three months after his release to discuss the day he learned he would be freed and his first months of freedom.]

Web Resources

Steven Barnes fully exonerated for 1985 rape and murder charges
[WKTV News, January 9, 2009]

Steve Barnes lost 20 years to lying jailhouse snitch; proposed law would keep liars from court [Associated Press, June 22, 2010]

Court of claims awards $3.5 million to Steven Barnes for wrongful conviction
[WKTV News, January 7, 2011] [00:27 video]