False Statements

When the prosecutor makes false statements, elicits false witness testimony, fails to correct testimony they know is false, or engages in other dishonest conduct.

This is a general category only and does not precisely describe the allegations of any particular complaint listed below. Review the complaint carefully to understand the specific misconduct alleged. 

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Prosecutors are not permitted to knowingly make a false statement to the court, use evidence they know to be false, or engage in any conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation. Witnesses testify under oath, and even if the prosecutor did not encourage them to lie, but learns they testified falsely, the prosecutor must take remedial steps by correcting the known false testimony to the court and jury and not emphasizing or relying on this false testimony in their case. The long-standing US Supreme Court precedent, Napue v. Illinois (1959), established that a prosecutor must correct a witness’s false testimony. More recently, in the 2012 Bronx case People v. Waters, the court held that it is a violation of due process when a prosecutor, “although not soliciting false evidence, allows it to go uncorrected when it appears.”