Laura Elizabeth Ensinger


This article discusses some of the key issues surrounding Australia’s current approach to supporting victims of wrongful conviction. It outlines the short fallings of current avenues of support available for victims in Australia after exoneration. The article advocates for several recommendations to address the current short failings of support services available to victims of wrongful conviction in Australia.

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a. Cases

Button v The Queen [2002] WASCA 35

Chamberlain v R (1983) 153 CLR 514

Chamberlain v R (1983) ALR 493

Chamberlain v R (No 2) (1984) 153 CLR 521

Inquest into the death of Azaria Chantel Loren Chamberlain [2012] NTMA 020

Raad v DPP [2007] VSC 330

R v Keogh (No 2) (2014) 121 SASR 307.

b. Journal Articles

Anderson, Andrea, ‘Wrongful Convictions and the Avenues of Redress: The Post-Conviction Review Process in Canada’ (2015) 20, 5- 26

Ambrust, Shawn, ‘When money isn’t enough: The case for holistic compensation of the Wrongfully Convicted’ (2004) 41(18) Criminal Law Review 157

Blandisi, Isabella, et al, ‘Public perceptions of the stigmatization of wrongfully convicted individuals: Findings from semi-structured interviews’ (2015) 20(11) The Qualitive Report 1881-1904

Clow, Kimberly, et al, ‘After Innocence: Perceptions of Individuals who have been wrongfully convicted’ (2015) 20(1) Legal and Criminological Psychology 147-164

Cunningham, Ann, ‘Forgotten families-The impacts of Imprisonment’ (2001) 59 Australian Institute of Family Studies: Family Matters 35-38

Dauber, Zieva et al, ‘Exoneree Engagement in Policy Reform Work: An Exploratory Study of the Innocence Movement Policy Reform Process’ (2017) 22(1) Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice 43, 50.

Grounds, Adrian, ‘Understanding the Effects of Wrongful Imprisonment’ (2005) 32 Crime and Justice 1-58

Irazola, Seri, et al, ‘Addressing the Impact of Wrongful Convictions on Crime Victims’ (2014) 274 National Institute of Justice Journal 34

Kregg, Christing ‘Right to Council: Mental Health Approaches to Support the Exonerated’ (2016) The University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration: Advocates Forum, 31

Konvisser, Zieva et al, ‘Exoneree Engagement in Policy Reform Work: An Exploratory Study of the Innocence Movement Policy Reform Process’ (2017) 22(1) Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice 43-60

Norris, Robert, (2017) ‘Framing DNA: Social Movement Theory and The Foundations of The Innocence Movement’ Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice 33(1), 26 –42

Savage, Stephen, et al, ‘Putting wrongs to right: Campaigns against miscarriages of justice’ (2007) 7(1) Criminology & Criminal Justice 83-105

Savage, Stephen, ‘Restoring Justice: Campaigns against Miscarriages and the Restorative Justice Process’ (2007) 4(2) European Journal of Criminology 195-216

Scott, Leslie, ‘It Never, Ever Ends: The Psychological Impact of Wrongful Conviction’ (2010) 5(2) American University Criminal Law Brief 10-22

Stacey Levin, ‘Post-Conviction Remedies in Illinois’ (1950) 40(5) Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology 606-615

Weathered, Lynne, ‘A Question of Innocence: Facilitating DNA-Base Exonerations in Australia (2004) 9(1) Deakin Law Review 279

Weathered, Lynne, ‘Investigating Innocence’ (2012) 12(1) Griffith Law Review 64- 90

Weathered, Lynne, ‘Invisible Innocence’ (2011) 32 Griffith Review: Wicked Problems Exquisite Dilemmas

Weathered, Lynne, ‘Pardon me: Current Avenues for the Correction of Wrongful Conviction in Australia’ (2005) 17(2) 204-216

Weigand, Heather, ‘Rebuilding a Life: The wrongfully convicted and exonerated’ (2009) 18 Public Interest Law Journal 427-437

Lynne Weathered ‘Reflections on the role of innocence organisations in Australia’ Flinders Law Journal (2015) 17(2) 515

Westervelt, Saundra and Cook, Kimberly, ‘Coping with Innocence after Death Row’ (2008) 7(4) Contexts 32-37

c. Reports

Desai, Tariq, Supporting Exonerees: Ensuring accessible, consistent and continuing support (Report 2018, Justice)

Irazola, Seri, et al, ‘Study of Victim Experiences of Wrongful Conviction’ (Final report 255084, September 2013, ICF International)

Walsh, Kelly, et al, ‘Estimating the Prevalence of Wrongful Convictions’ (Final report 251115, September 2017, Urban Institute)

d. Other resources

The Innocence Project ‘Exonerate’ (webpage)

Coen, Jeff, ‘They’re in Limbo’ Chicago Tribute, (online 24 March 2004)

Rebecca Dillion, ‘Miscarriages of justice’ (webpage 13 February 2012) .

Commonweal Housing, ‘How we work’ (webpage)

Coen, Jeff, ‘They’re in limbo’ Chicago Tribune (online 22 March 2004)

Carrick, Damien and Ross, Monique, ‘This man was convicted of murder, but his childhood friend says it should have been me’ The Law Report ABC (online 12 December 2018)

Michaels, Samantha, ‘After Prison, the Exonerated Face a Different Kind of Hell’ Mother Jones (online 24 October 2016)

Rowlings, Bill, ‘Prisoners in Australia? 7% are innocent’ Civil Liberties Australia (online 25 November 2017)