The Supreme Court is raising serious doubts about Colorado’s practice of not refunding court fees and other costs to people who are convicted of crimes but later exonerated.
Most justices hearing arguments in the case on Monday seemed concerned that refusing to refund the money violates due process rights.
The case involves two people whose convictions for sexual offenses were later thrown out. One paid about $700 in court fees and victim restitution while the other paid more than $4,400 in similar costs.
Colorado’s highest court said the defendants could not get a refund unless they proved their innocence by clear and convincing evidence in a separate proceeding. That is a higher burden than the criminal standard of proof beyond a reasonable doubt.
Republish with permission of The Associated Press.