The Role of Newly Discovered Evidence

When a defendant is convicted in a criminal trial but newly discovered evidence comes to light after the conclusion of the legal proceedings, then he/she can either file a motion to vacate/correct a sentence or for a new trial. In general, the new evidence must not have been known to the defense during the original trial, not have been reasonably possible to discover prior or throughout the trial, and it can cause a jury to find the defendant of a different verdict. 

Common types of newly discovered evidence include: 

  • DNA evidence that clears a defendant of responsibility 

  • Forensic evidence that shows an underlying injury or an injury that was caused by another person 

  • New research that debunks the previous science the prosecution relied on at trial 

  • Evidence of mistaken identity 

  • Eyewitness evidence that gives a defendant a valid alibi or establishes that another person had committed the offense 

It is important to understand that the newly discovered evidence is substantial in nature and will likely lead to an acquittal at a new trial or is otherwise result in a different verdict from the jury, as we mentioned above. On the other hand, minor or slightly helpful facts do not qualify as new evidence. 

Appeals based on newly discovered evidence are extremely complex, which is why you need an experienced appellate attorney to help you navigate these issues. With more than four decades of experience, Attorney Martin G. Weinberg has successfully challenged guilty verdicts and reversed convictions on behalf of many clients facing a wide range of serious federal criminal charges. 

Do not hesitate to contact Martin G. Weinberg, Attorney at Law today at (617) 227-3700 to learn more about the firm’s experienced and knowledgeable legal services.