We are supposed to be presumed innocent until proven guilty in America, right? Why then, for so long, were those defendants whose convictions had been overturned, deprived of their ability to get a refund on the fines and fees paid in the underlying case? Who knows. But thankfully, that is no longer the case.
While our Supreme Court often divided, it ruled in a 7-1 decision that Colorado, one of the few states that frequently held on to money taken from defendants in such situations, had to be refunded. "After a conviction has been reversed, unless and until the defendant should be retried, he must be presumed innocent of that charge," Justice Ginsberg said. "Colorado may not presume a person, adjudged guilty of no crime, nonetheless guilty enough for monetary extractions."
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