The proposed Michael Morton Act still has a long way to go before becoming law, but that the bill exists at all — and is awaiting a vote by the Texas Senate — is more than a little surprising.
Written off as a lost cause after opposition from defense lawyers and prosecutors, the bill designed to limit future wrongful convictions was rescued last week in a flurry of compromises after sometimes heated, and often tedious, negotiations that frequently involved Morton or his representatives.
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Reporter Chuck Lindell, who has covered legal affairs since 2005, has written extensively about Michael Morton’s case, beginning in 2008 with an appeal pressing for the DNA tests that would eventually lead to his exoneration.