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University of Michigan Law School

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Criminal Law

History

Articles 1 - 15 of 15

Full-Text Articles in Law

Reckless Juveniles, Kimberly Thomas Feb 2019

Reckless Juveniles, Kimberly Thomas

Articles

Modern doctrine and scholarship largely take it for granted that offenders should be criminally punished for reckless acts.1 Yet, developments in our understanding of human behavior can shed light on how we define and attribute criminal liability, or at least force us to grapple with the categories that have existed for so long. This Article examines recklessness and related doctrines in light of the shifts in understanding of adolescent behavior and its biological roots, to see what insights we might attain, or what challenges these understandings pose to this foundational mens rea doctrine. Over the past decade, the U ...


From Grace To Grids: Rethinking Due Process Protections For Parole., Kimberly A. Thomas, Paul D. Reingold May 2017

From Grace To Grids: Rethinking Due Process Protections For Parole., Kimberly A. Thomas, Paul D. Reingold

Articles

Current due process law gives little protection to prisoners at the point of parole, even though the parole decision, like sentencing, determines whether or not a person will serve more time or will go free. The doctrine regarding parole, which developed mostly in the late 1970s, was based on a judicial understanding of parole as an experimental, subjective, and largely standardless art—rooted in assessing the individual “character” of the potential parolee. In this Article we examine the foundations of the doctrine, and conclude that the due process inquiry at the point of parole should take into account the stark ...


Lights Hidden Under Bushel's Case, Thomas A. Green Jan 2016

Lights Hidden Under Bushel's Case, Thomas A. Green

Book Chapters

Some forty years ago, Charlie Donahue created a course which he titled "Law, Morals and Society." Designed for undergraduates, and situated among the offerings of the University of Michigan's interdisciplinary Medieval and Renaissance Collegium, the course reflected the approach to doing history that, as this volume recognizes, Charlie has followed throughout his long and enormously influential career as scholar, teacher, lecturer, and inepressible master of well-timed interventions during conference-panel discussion periods. "LMS" was composed of four units. Charlie, who taught two of them, led off with the legal basis for the deposition of Richard II; I followed with the ...


Reflections On Freedom And Criminal Responsibility In Late Twentieth Century American Legal Thought, Thomas A. Green, Merrill Catharine Hodnefield Jan 2015

Reflections On Freedom And Criminal Responsibility In Late Twentieth Century American Legal Thought, Thomas A. Green, Merrill Catharine Hodnefield

Articles

It is now a commonplace among historians that American criminal jurisprudence underwent a dramatic change something like two-thirds to three-quarters into the last century. Roughly, this development is understood as a shift (or drift) from a more-or-less pure consequentialism to a "mixed theory" wherein retributivism played a major-at times, dominant-role. As the new paradigm remains intact, now approaching a half-century, the development qualifies as a significant historical fact. The fact applies not only to the history of justification for punishment but also to conceptions of the underlying principle of (basis for) responsibility. The two are rightly distinguished: for many scholars ...


The Jury And Criminal Responsibility In Anglo-American History, Thomas A. Green Jan 2015

The Jury And Criminal Responsibility In Anglo-American History, Thomas A. Green

Articles

Anglo-American theories of criminal responsibility require scholars to grapple with, inter alia, the relationship between the formal rule of law and the powers of the lay jury as well as two inherent ideas of freedom: freedom of the will and political liberty. Here, by way of canvassing my past work and prefiguring future work, I sketch some elements of the history of the Anglo-American jury and offer some glimpses of commentary on the interplay between the jury—particularly its application of conventional morality to criminal judgments—and the formal rule of law of the state. My central intent is to ...


The Romance Of Revenge: Capital Punishment In America, Samuel R. Gross Jan 1993

The Romance Of Revenge: Capital Punishment In America, Samuel R. Gross

Articles

On February 17, 1992, Jeffrey Dahmer was sentenced to 15 consecutive terms of life imprisonment for killing and dismembering 15 young men and boys (Associated Press 1992a). Dahmer had been arrested six months earlier, on July 22, 1991. On January 13 he pled guilty to the fifteen murder counts against him, leaving open only the issue of his sanity. Jury selection began two weeks later, and the trial proper started on January 30. The jury heard two weeks of testimony about murder, mutilation and necrophilia; they deliberated for 5 hours before finding that Dahmer was sane when he committed these ...


Review Of Kingship, Law And Society: Criminal Justice In The Reign Of Henry V, Thomas A. Green Jan 1992

Review Of Kingship, Law And Society: Criminal Justice In The Reign Of Henry V, Thomas A. Green

Reviews

Edward Powell's splendid study of Henry V's strategy for keeping peace among magnate and gentry factions represents an important contribution to the history of criminal justice. After providing a panoramic view of the machinery of criminal justice, Powell analyzes the extent to which that machinery was effective as between the Crown, at the center, and the upper echelons of society in the provinces. His conclusion, not surprisingly, is that the regular processes of common-law criminal administration could not easily be deployed at those levels. But Powell does not let the matter drop there. Kingship, Law, and Society presents ...


Dreams, Prophecy And Sorcery: Blaming The Secret Offender In Medieval Iceland, William I. Miller Jan 1986

Dreams, Prophecy And Sorcery: Blaming The Secret Offender In Medieval Iceland, William I. Miller

Articles

An eminent legal historian once noted that the fundamental problem of law enforcement in primitive societies is that of the secret offender. The Icelandic legal and dispute processing systems depended on a wrongdoer publishing his deed, or at least committing it in an open and notorious manner. No state agencies existed to investigate and discover the non-publishing wrongdoer. But there were strong normative inducements to wrong openly; one's name was at stake. There was absolutely no honor in thievery, only the darkest shame; the ransmadr, on the other hand, suffered no shame for his successful raids, even if he ...


The Jury, Seditious Libel And The Criminal Law, Thomas A. Green Jan 1984

The Jury, Seditious Libel And The Criminal Law, Thomas A. Green

Book Chapters

The seditious libel trials of the eighteenth century constitute an important chapter in the history of freedom of the press and the growth of democratic government. While much has been written about the trials and about the administration of the criminal law in eighteenth-century England, little has been said about the relationship between the libel prosecutions and the more pervasive and long-standing problems of the criminal law. We have perhaps gone too far in positing-or simply assuming-a separation between political high misdemeanors and common-run felony cases such as homicide and theft. For there were points of contact between the two ...


Review Of Crime In England, 1550-1800, Thomas A. Green Jan 1979

Review Of Crime In England, 1550-1800, Thomas A. Green

Reviews

Crime in England, 1550-1800, is the second collection of essays on the social history of crime and the criminal law in early modern England to appear in recent years. Together with the essays in Albion's Fatal Tree (1975),' these offerings advance our knowledge of the subject considerably. To be sure, as G. R. Elton cautions, there are methodological problems in a field so new, and Elton's "Introduction" will serve as an excellent starting point for readers concerned with such matters. We must nevertheless recognize the accomplishments of the new school of socio-legal historians. The essays in this volume ...


Review Of Crime And Public Order In England In The Later Middle Ages, Thomas A. Green Jan 1974

Review Of Crime And Public Order In England In The Later Middle Ages, Thomas A. Green

Reviews

Slowly but surely the history of English criminal law is being rewritten. Abundant monographs, articles and introductions to texts have appeared in the past couple of decades; many more are on the way. Work has gone ahead on the substantive law of crimes, on the procedures of the criminal law and its institutions andmore tentatively-on the social history of English criminal law. While medievalists have led the way, work is now being undertaken by early modern and modern historians as well.


Review Of The King's Pardon For Homicide To A.D. 1307, Thomas A. Green Jan 1972

Review Of The King's Pardon For Homicide To A.D. 1307, Thomas A. Green

Reviews

NAOMI D. Hurnard's The King's Pardon for Homicide before AD 1307 is significant and instructive for both legal and social historians. The author has painstakingly pieced together the available evidence from a variety of classes of mediaeval English public records to achieve a clear statement of the law of excusable homicide, i.e., non-felonious but requiring a royal pardon. She has lucidly presented the procedure which marks out the legal life story of persons deserving pardon, from the pardonable slaying to the formal proclamation of the king's peace. But she has also accomplished much more. Through careful ...


Societal Concepts Of Criminal Liability For Homicide In Medieval England, Thomas A. Green Jan 1972

Societal Concepts Of Criminal Liability For Homicide In Medieval England, Thomas A. Green

Articles

THE early history of English criminal law lies hidden behind the laconic formulas of the rolls and law books. The rules of the law, as expounded by the judges, have been the subject of many studies; but their practical application in the courts, where the jury of the community was the final and unbridled arbiter, remains a mystery: in short, we know little of the social mores regarding crime and crimi- nals. This study represents an attempt to delineate one major aspect of these societal attitudes. Its thesis is that from late Anglo-Saxon times to the end of the middle ...


The Courts Of Judea, Jerome C. Knowlton Jan 1894

The Courts Of Judea, Jerome C. Knowlton

Articles

The study of Jewish jurisprudence has become interesting during the past ten years through the efforts of some painstaking scholars, who have not been burdened with any particular dogma, but have been actuated by a true Christian spirit. They have been close students of those portions of the Talmud which throw light on the jurisprudence of the Jews.


The Element Of Locality In The Law Of Criminal Jurisdiction, Henry W. Rogers Jan 1889

The Element Of Locality In The Law Of Criminal Jurisdiction, Henry W. Rogers

Articles

THE Federal Courts have no common law criminal jurisdiction. The question was raised in the United States Circuit Court for the District of Pennsylvania, in 1798, in United States v. Worrall, 2 Dallas, 384, and the Court was equally divided in opinion. Iii 1818, Mr. Justice STORY, in United States v. Coolidge, 1 Gallison, 488, decided that there were common law offences against the United States. But this, as we shall see, was overruled by the Supreme Court. As early as 1807, Chief Justice MARSHALL, in Ex parte .Bollman, 4 Cranch, 75, had said, "This Court disclaims all jurisdiction not ...