Fun Facts #2: Crime and Punishment

This is a continuation from our first post on Crime and Punishment…

#1: In ancient Rome, the preferred method of execution was crucifixion. Although largely abandoned as a method of execution by nearly every country in the world, at least one country still uses the method: Sudan. Crucifixion results in a slow, agonizing death, which is can be caused by a number of factors, and can take hours or even days before death occurs.

#2: Roughly 25 percent of people wrongfully convicted of a crime were found guilty due to incriminating statements and false confessions. There is a reason (other than profit) that so many lawyers say that people who are accused of a crime should never talk to the police without a lawyer present. That’s if they are fortunate enough to be in a place where the law requires representation for accused persons.

#3: Mistaken identification of the accused was said to be a factor in 77 percent of the cases where convicted criminals have been exonerated later due to DNA evidence.  Much of the time, a person’s ability to recognize faces is not quite as accurate as they believe it is, and is further complicated by the difficulty people have remembering faces of people whose race differs from their own.

#4: Of all cases of convicted criminals being exonerated due to DNA evidence, 15 percent of convictions were due in part to testimony by snitches or informants. One of the main problems with snitches is that they are often criminals themselves who are offered rewards (such as a reduced sentence) in exchange for their testimony against someone else.

#5: Thomas Edison invented the electric chair. Its development was spurred on by the cruelty of hanging.