The Campaign For DA

1.07.2008

That's A Lie

Dallas DA Craig Watkins writes an op-ed piece about his first year in office. Although I like the guy, this is crazy talk:

We came to office with the mantra of being "smart on crime." This encompasses vigorously prosecuting and seeking tough punishments for criminals who are found guilty of violent crimes. It also means we employ a method of prosecution that has produced a conviction rate of 98.5 percent over the last year.
98.5%? Absolutely impossible. No way. It cannot be done. If that number concerned only jury trials (which is doesn't), you wouldn't have a conviction rate even close to that. DWI trials alone are historically a 50/50 proposition. If that number involves all cases (including plea bargains) then I bet the number is under 50% when you consider how often deferred adjudication is given (which, by definition, means there is not a conviction.)

"98.5%" is an outright lie.

Edit: Someone wrote that he meant the conviction rate was 98.5% higher than the year before. I don't think that's what he meant at all. I think he is saying "Over the last year, we have a conviction rate of 98.5%" And whoever wrote the caption for the DMN for the photo above, sure read it as I did. (But it was an interesting take.)