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The Heat Of Passion And Blameworthy Reasons To Be Angry, Jonathan Witmer-Rich Apr 2018

The Heat Of Passion And Blameworthy Reasons To Be Angry, Jonathan Witmer-Rich

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

This article seeks to resolve a longstanding conceptual puzzle plaguing the "heat of passion" doctrine--how courts should determine which features, beliefs, or characteristics of a defendant are properly relevant to assessing whether the defendant was sufficiently provoked, and which of those features should be disregarded. This article argues that provocation is not adequate if the reason the defendant became extremely angry is due to some blameworthy belief or attribute of the defendant. A belief is blameworthy if it contradicts the fundamental values of the political community. The blameworthiness principle distinguishes those aspects of the defendant that cannot form a basis ...


Interrogation And The Roberts Court, Jonathan Witmer-Rich Jan 2011

Interrogation And The Roberts Court, Jonathan Witmer-Rich

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

Through 2010, the Roberts Court decided five cases involving the rules for police interrogation under the Fifth and Sixth Amendments: Kansas v. Ventris; Montejo v. Louisiana; Florida v. Powell; Maryland v. Shatzer; and Berghuis v. Thompkins. This Article argues that these decisions show the Roberts Court reshaping constitutional interrogation rules according to a new (as-yet unarticulated) principle: “fair play” in interrogations. The Warren Court believed that suspects in police interrogation were vulnerable to inherent compelling pressures; the Court correspondingly created procedural interrogation rules under the Fifth and Sixth Amendments (Miranda and Massiah) to protect suspects. The Roberts Court does not ...


Bearing False Witness: Perjured Affidavits And The Fourth Amendment, Stephen W. Gard Jan 2008

Bearing False Witness: Perjured Affidavits And The Fourth Amendment, Stephen W. Gard

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

The purpose of this Article is to articulate appropriate legal doctrine to govern the problem of false statements of fact by law enforcement officers in warrant affidavits. This Article addresses the issue in the context of actions brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 to redress such Fourth Amendment violations. This perspective promises to be interesting and unique for two reasons. First, the fact that the guilty are ordinarily the direct beneficiaries of the Fourth Amendment has long been a matter of grave concern. In contrast, rarely, if ever, will anyone except an innocent victim of a search based ...


Not To Decide Is To Decide: The U.S. Supreme Court's Thirty-Year Struggle With One Case About Competency To Waive Death Penalty Appeals, Phyllis L. Crocker Jan 2004

Not To Decide Is To Decide: The U.S. Supreme Court's Thirty-Year Struggle With One Case About Competency To Waive Death Penalty Appeals, Phyllis L. Crocker

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

In 1995, the U.S. Supreme Court dismissed Rees v. Peyton, a case that had been on its docket since 1965. Rees was a death penalty case in which the petitioner sought to withdraw his petition for writ of certiorari so that he could be executed. The Court stayed the proceedings after Rees was found incompetent to waive his appeal, but the Court did not dismiss the case until after Rees died of natural causes. Rees pended in the Court during the terms of three Chief Justices. Even though the Court underwent major changes in personnel and philosophy during those ...


Appointed But (Nearly) Prevented From Serving: My Experience As A Grand Jury Foreperson, Phyllis L. Crocker Jan 2004

Appointed But (Nearly) Prevented From Serving: My Experience As A Grand Jury Foreperson, Phyllis L. Crocker

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

In summer 2003, I was a grand jury foreperson for the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas in Cleveland, Ohio. The service of this grand jury, and my tenure as foreperson, were unique in the annals of grand juries. We were selected and sworn in the same manner as any grand jury, but heard cases for only one day of our four-month term-the last day. In the interim, the prosecutor filed cases in two courts, seeking to discharge us, as being “tainted” by our supervising judge's initial instructions about our duties and the law. I begin this essay with ...


Rape By Drugs: A Statutory Overview And Proposals For Reform, Patricia J. Falk Jan 2002

Rape By Drugs: A Statutory Overview And Proposals For Reform, Patricia J. Falk

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

The methods by which human beings accomplish nonconsensual sexual activity with fellow humans are almost limitless. They use physical force; they beat, choke, and knock their victims unconscious. They kidnap and restrain them. They use weapons and threats of immediate force to subdue their quarry. They come in groups with the superior strength of their number. They exploit the element of surprise. They coerce, extort, and blackmail others into sexual submission. They lie, pretend, impersonate, and defraud, trapping the unwary in webs of deceit. They victimize mentally ill, mentally disabled, physically weak, and physically incapacitated persons. They abuse their positions ...


Crossing The Line: Rape-Murder And The Death Penalty, Phyllis L. Crocker Jan 2000

Crossing The Line: Rape-Murder And The Death Penalty, Phyllis L. Crocker

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

When a woman is raped and then murdered, it is among the most horrifying of crimes. It is also, often, among the most sensational, notorious, and galvanizing of cases. In 1964, Kitty Genovese was raped and murdered in Queens, New York. Her murder sparked soul-searching across the country because her neighbors heard her cries for help and did not respond: it made us question whether we had become an uncaring people. During the 1970s and 80s a number of serial killers raped and murdered their victims: including Ted Bundy in Florida and William George Bonin, the “Freeway Killer,” in Southern ...


Childhood Abuse And Adult Murder: Implications For The Death Penalty, Phyllis L. Crocker Jan 1999

Childhood Abuse And Adult Murder: Implications For The Death Penalty, Phyllis L. Crocker

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

A jury that convicts a defendant of capital murder must then decide whether that defendant deserves a life sentence or death. Mitigating evidence is crucial to the defense at this stage because such evidence may provide the jury with a basis for imposing a life sentence. In this article, Professor Crocker argues that evidence that a defendant was abused as a child is paradigmatic mitigating evidence. A detailed presentation of the defendant's childhood experience and a cogent explanation of its long-term repercussions will enable the jury to understand why the defendant committed the crime, perhaps allowing the jury to ...


Feminism And Defending Men On Death Row, Phyllis L. Crocker Jan 1998

Feminism And Defending Men On Death Row, Phyllis L. Crocker

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

In this Essay I explore the relationship between being a feminist and representing men on death row. It is appropriate to engage in this inquiry in considering how the law has developed in the twenty-five years since Furman v. Georgia. During that time both Furman and the advent of feminist legal theory have required a restructuring in the way we think about two fundamental legal questions: for death penalty jurisprudence, how and why we sentence an individual to death; and for feminist jurisprudence, how the law views crimes of violence against women. The relationship between these two developments becomes apparent ...


Rape By Fraud And Rape By Coercion, Patricia J. Falk Jan 1998

Rape By Fraud And Rape By Coercion, Patricia J. Falk

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

For more than a century, courts, legislatures, and legal commentators have struggled with the controversial and highly charged question of whether accomplishing sexual intercourse by means of fraud or coercion is blameworthy and appropriately condemnable as rape. In 1986 Professor Susan Estrich suggested that rape law should "prohibit fraud to secure sex to the same extent we prohibit fraud to secure money, and prohibit extortion to secure sex to the same extent we prohibit extortion to secure money." (Susan Estrich, Rape, 95 Yale L. J. 1087, 1120 (1986)). Such suggestion spawned the latest cycle of discussion about this age-old conundrum ...


Concepts Of Culpability And Deathworthiness: Differentiating Between Guilt And Punishment In Death Penalty Cases, Phyllis L. Crocker Jan 1997

Concepts Of Culpability And Deathworthiness: Differentiating Between Guilt And Punishment In Death Penalty Cases, Phyllis L. Crocker

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

The punishment of death is supposed to be reserved for those defendants who commit the most grievous murders and deserve the most extreme punishment. It is constitutionally insufficient to conclude that because a defendant is guilty of committing murder, death is the only deserved punishment. The judgment that a defendant is one of the few who will be sentenced to death requires an inquiry that looks beyond the defendant's guilt to consider whether the defendant is worthy of a death sentence. This article argues that the distinction between a defendant's guilt and deathworthiness is so often obscured that ...


Novel Theories Of Criminal Defense Based Upon The Toxicity Of The Social Environment: Urban Psychosis, Television Intoxication, And Black Rage, Patricia J. Falk Jan 1996

Novel Theories Of Criminal Defense Based Upon The Toxicity Of The Social Environment: Urban Psychosis, Television Intoxication, And Black Rage, Patricia J. Falk

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

In recent years, defendants have proffered a multitude of novel theories of criminal defense in seeking to explain their criminal behavior in terms of internal and external influences beyond their control, including biological processes, chemical reactions, intra-psychic dynamics, social conditions, and cross cultural stresses. This Article focuses on one subset of this burgeoning class of defenses: those based upon the central premise that the defendant's criminal conduct was caused, or significantly influenced, by his exposure to social environmental factors or, if you will, toxins affecting his mental functioning. While a wide panoply of toxins exist within the fabric of ...


Gates, Leon And The Compromise Of Adjudicatory Fairness: (Part Ii)-Aggressive Majoritarianism, Willful Deafness, And The New Exception To The Exclusionary Rule, Joel J. Finer Jan 1986

Gates, Leon And The Compromise Of Adjudicatory Fairness: (Part Ii)-Aggressive Majoritarianism, Willful Deafness, And The New Exception To The Exclusionary Rule, Joel J. Finer

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

This Article will offer an elaboration of the idea of judicial "aggressiveness" (which Professor Stone, by and large, leaves undefined) through examination of the majority opinion in United States v. Leon and its application in Massachusetts v. Sheppard. It will also advance the thesis that the majority in Leon exhibited a particular kind of aggressiveness--willful deafness.


Gates, Leon And The Compromise Of Adjudicatory Fairness: (Part I)-A Dialogue On Prejudicial Concurrences, Joel J. Finer Jan 1985

Gates, Leon And The Compromise Of Adjudicatory Fairness: (Part I)-A Dialogue On Prejudicial Concurrences, Joel J. Finer

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

On July 5, 1984, the Supreme Court in Leon v. United States held that where law enforcement officials execute a search warrant issued in violation of the dictates of the fourth amendment but act in the "good faith," "objectively-reasonable" belief that the warrant was constitutionally valid, the fruits of the search should not (with a few exceptions) be excluded from evidence under the exclusionary rule. On June 8, 1983, in Illinois v. Gates, the Supreme Court, after calling for and receiving briefs and arguments on the same issue of whether the exclusionary rule should be modified, concluded, for reasons of ...


Introduction To Debate (Between N. Morris And R. Bonnie): Should The Insanity Defense Be Abolished?, Joel J. Finer Jan 1985

Introduction To Debate (Between N. Morris And R. Bonnie): Should The Insanity Defense Be Abolished?, Joel J. Finer

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

The author introduces a debate between Professor Norval Morris and Professor Richard Bonnie on the insanity defense.


Electronic Surveillance, Computers, And The Fourth Amendment - The New Telecommunications Environment Calls For Reexamination Of Doctrine, Arthur R. Landever Jan 1984

Electronic Surveillance, Computers, And The Fourth Amendment - The New Telecommunications Environment Calls For Reexamination Of Doctrine, Arthur R. Landever

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

We are in the midst of a revolution in information collection and telecommunications. Computer networking, the unification of the various telecommunications systems, the establishment of central data banks, and government tracking and profiling of vast numbers of Americans present momentous challenges for our constitutional system. Increasingly, in our evolving culture, an individual enters the public setting in order to conduct his personal life. Fourth Amendment doctrine respecting electronic surveillance, as well as Supreme Court notions of "free choice" and "assumption of risk" must come to grips with this new reality. In the main, the author urges judicial intervention, as the ...


Wayward Children And The Law, 1820-1900: The Genesis Of The Status Offense Jurisdiction Of The Juvenile Court, Peter D. Garlock Jan 1979

Wayward Children And The Law, 1820-1900: The Genesis Of The Status Offense Jurisdiction Of The Juvenile Court, Peter D. Garlock

Law Faculty Articles and Essays

Since the United States Supreme Court's decision in In re Gault in 1967, in which due process rights were extended to juvenile delinquency proceedings which might result in commitment of youths to reformatory institutions, numerous courts, legislatures, and private study commissions have been re-examining the rights and obligations of young people in contemporary American society. In this ongoing debate over juvenile jurisprudence, perhaps no issue has provoked as much controversy as the question of whether juvenile courts should continue to exercise jurisdiction over juvenile "status offenses"--those unique forms of deviant behavior which are illegal only for minors. It ...