Plea agreements play a large role in courts in Tennessee and around the country. Many people have a hard time understanding why defendants are able to obtain such lenient sentencing through plea bargains, despite the severity of the crimes they are accused of committing. In many areas of the country, more than 90 percent of the criminal cases result in plea agreements. The primary reason is that the judicial system does not have sufficient resources to take every case to trial.
Tennessee residents may be interested to learn about a case involving two teenage brothers in North Carolina who were convicted of murder after false confessions. Now ages 51 and 47, the brothers were pardoned in June after spending three decades in prison. Each man was awarded $750,000 in compensation. According to the brothers' family, both of the men are having a difficult time adjusting to the outside world, and the 47-year-old brother suffers from severe mental health problems.