“Innocent until proven guilty” v. “freedom of speech.” Which fundamental human right trumps the other? This is a question being raised following several cases of publicized arrests of criminal suspects who later turn out to be innocent.
When the media publicly announces an arrest of an individual suspected of a crime, it is usually with the belief that the person is already guilty. Rarely do we imagine that this person might be innocent, and even less often do we think about the impact that a false arrest will have on the suspect’s life.
In the UK, judiciary officials are considering legislation to prevent the media from naming such suspects, in an attempt to prevent any future damage to the reputation of innocent civilians.
Opponents of this new legislation note that protecting the criminal suspect in some cases may go against the public interest.
Victims of false public arrests are able to sue newspapers and other media outlets for libel.
Have you been wrongfully accused of a crime and your life has been significantly altered? If so, seek out a Las Vegas criminal defense attorney today. For more information, contact Brian J. Smith at 702.380.8248.
Main photo by: .v1ctor