WASHINGTON — An ideologically divided Supreme Court overturned a $14 million judgment given to a former death row inmate who was convicted of murder after prosecutors withheld evidence in his trial.

The court’s five conservative-leaning justices said the New Orleans district attorney’s office should not be punished for not providing specific training on Brady rights, which dictate when to turn over evidence to a suspect’s lawyer that could prove their innocence.

But in a rare oral dissent, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said John Thompson deserved damages for “the gross, deliberately indifferent and long-continuing violation of his fair trial rights.”

Thompson successfully sued the prosecutor’s office in New Orleans, arguing that former District Attorney Harry Connick Sr. showed deliberate indifference by not adequately training assistant district attorneys.

Prosecutors did not turn over a crime lab report that indicated that Thompson’s blood type did not match the perpetrator in a 1985 attempted robbery. Prosecutors used that conviction to get the death penalty in another case Thompson was involved in.

Prosecutors normally have immunity for their actions while working, but Thompson convinced a jury that the district attorney’s office had not trained its lawyers on how to handle evidence. The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans upheld the lower court verdict.

Brady rights are named after Brady v. Maryland, which says prosecutors violate a defendant’s constitutional rights by not turning over evidence that could prove a person’s innocence.

Lawyers are expected to know the law when they graduate from law school and pass the bar exam, and undergo on-the-job training and continuing education afterward, Justice Clarence Thomas said. But Connick cannot be blamed for his lawyers’ deficiencies, he said.