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Innocence Interrupted: Reconstructing Fatherhood In The Shadow Of Child Molestation, Camille Gear Rich Feb 2012

Innocence Interrupted: Reconstructing Fatherhood In The Shadow Of Child Molestation, Camille Gear Rich

University of Southern California Legal Studies Working Paper Series

This Article shows why criminal law should be regarded as parenting law, as child molestation statutes formally categorized as criminal statutes are increasingly being used to regulate parents’ behavior as they engage in mundane childcare practices. In the hands of legal decision-makers, these laws end up being enforced in ways that reinstantiate traditional gender norms. This Article charts the problem by showing how the inquiry authorized by today’s broad, far reaching child molestation statutes invites and even requires judges, juries other legal decision-makers to rely on gendered notions of cultural “common sense” to resolve child molestation cases involving fathers ...


E-Race-Ing Gender: The Racial Construction Of Prison Rape, Kim S. Buchanan Nov 2011

E-Race-Ing Gender: The Racial Construction Of Prison Rape, Kim S. Buchanan

University of Southern California Legal Studies Working Paper Series

Prison rape is a form of gender violence. Men’s prisons institutionalize a toxic form of masculinity when they foster homophobia, physical violence and an institutional culture that requires inmates to prove their masculinity by fighting. Staff and inmate abusers alike target small, young, effeminate, gay, bisexual and transgender inmates. According to recent nationwide survey data, the two factors that most strongly predict an inmate’s risk of sexual abuse are (1) prior sexual victimization, and (2) gay, bisexual or transgender identity. Nonetheless, prison rape continues to be understood in accordance with an inaccurate stereotype that it is typically black-on-white ...


The Benefits Of A Right To Silence For The Innocent, Shmuel Leshem Nov 2011

The Benefits Of A Right To Silence For The Innocent, Shmuel Leshem

University of Southern California Legal Studies Working Paper Series

This article shows that innocent suspects benefit from exercising their right to silence during criminal proceedings. We present a model in which a criminal suspect can either make a statement or remain silent during police interrogation. At trial, the jury observes informative but imperfect signals about the suspect's guilt and the truthfulness of the suspect's statement. We show that a right to silence benefits innocent suspects by providing them with a safer alternative to speech, as well as by reducing the probability of wrongful conviction for suspects who remain silent with and without a right to silence.


The Selection Of Thirteenth-Century Disputes For Litigation, Daniel M. Klerman Jul 2011

The Selection Of Thirteenth-Century Disputes For Litigation, Daniel M. Klerman

University of Southern California Legal Studies Working Paper Series

Priest and Klein's seminal 1984 article argued that litigated cases differ systematically and predictably from settled cases. This article tests the Priest-Klein selection model using a data set of thirteenth-century English cases. These cases are especially informative because juries rendered verdicts even in settled cases, so one can directly compare verdicts in settled and litigated cases. The results are consistent with the predictions of the Priest-Klein article, as well as with the asymmetric-information selection models developed by Hylton and Shavell.


The Limited Diagnosticity Of Criminal Trials, Dan Simon Feb 2011

The Limited Diagnosticity Of Criminal Trials, Dan Simon

University of Southern California Legal Studies Working Paper Series

A fundamental function of the criminal trial is to determine the facts correctly in order to distinguish between guilty and innocent defendants, and between strong and weak prosecutions. This Article seeks to answer a simple question: How good is the criminal trial at reaching accurate factual conclusions?

The Article applies a body of experimental psychology to examine the ability of factfinders to assess the evidence and draw correct inferences from it. The psychological research indicates that the mental processes involved in determining facts in criminal trials are more complex and fickle than generally believed. Part I exposes the difficulties in ...


The Case Of "Death For A Dollar Ninety-Five": Miscarriages Of Justice And Constructions Of American Identity, Mary L. Dudziak May 2010

The Case Of "Death For A Dollar Ninety-Five": Miscarriages Of Justice And Constructions Of American Identity, Mary L. Dudziak

University of Southern California Legal Studies Working Paper Series

This is a story about a case long forgotten. It was a case that needed to be forgotten, to safeguard the meaning of American justice. The case of “Death for a Dollar Ninety-Five” began one July night in Marion, Alabama, in 1957, and soon captured the attention of the world. It involved an African American man, a white woman, and the robbery of a small amount of change late in the evening. The conviction was swift and the penalty was death. International criticism soon rained down on the Alabama Governor and the American Secretary of State, leading to clemency and ...


Gendered Laws, Racial Stories, Kim S. Buchanan Sep 2009

Gendered Laws, Racial Stories, Kim S. Buchanan

University of Southern California Legal Studies Working Paper Series

In this Article, I argue that, in prisons and in Title VII jurisprudence, the legal response to same-sex sexual harassment and abuse enforces the norms of masculinity that abusers enact in the practice of such abuse and harassment. Prison guards and administrators routinely refuse to prevent or punish sexual abuse, telling the victim to “Be a man. Stand up and fight.” If he is raped, the victim is often told that he is—or has been made—“gay,” and therefore “liked it.” Similar norms, albeit in less violent and more coded form, inflect Title VII jurisprudence of same-sex sexual harassment ...


The Case Of Weak Will And Wayward Desire., Vera Bergelson Sep 2008

The Case Of Weak Will And Wayward Desire., Vera Bergelson

Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers

In this article, I confront Garvey¡¯s argument that a weak-willed individual deserves partial excuse for trying to resist a strong desire that pushes him toward commission of a criminal act even though in the end he unreasonably abandons his resistance and commits the crime.

I attempt to refute Garvey¡¯s argument on two counts: one, I question whether the law should indeed provide mitigation to such an offender; and two, I argue that, even if it should, this mitigation may not come in the form of a partial defense. Defenses, even partial, are desert based, and there is nothing ...


Consent To Harm, Vera Bergelson Jul 2008

Consent To Harm, Vera Bergelson

Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers

This article continues conversation about consent to physical harm started in Vera Bergelson, The Right to Be Hurt: Testing the Boundaries of Consent, 75 Geo. Wash. L. Rev. 165 (2007).

Intentionally injuring or killing another person is presumptively wrong. To overcome this presumption, the perpetrator must establish a defense of justification. Consent of the victim may serve as one of the grounds for such a defense. This article puts forward criteria for the defense of consent.

One element of the proposed defense is essential to both its complete and partial forms ¨C that consent of the victim be rational and ...


Search Me?, John Burkoff Aug 2007

Search Me?, John Burkoff

University of Pittsburgh School of Law Working Paper Series

Professor Burkoff contends that most people who purportedly “consent” to searches by law enforcement officers are not really – "freely and voluntarily," as the Supreme Court decisional law supposedly requires – consenting to such searches. Yet, absent unusual circumstances, the great likelihood is that a court nonetheless will conclude that such consent was valid and any evidence seized admissible under the Fourth Amendment.

Professor Burkoff argues, however, that the Supreme Court’s 2006 decision in Georgia v. Randolph now dictates that the application of consent law doctrine should reflect the actual voluntariness (or involuntariness) of the questioned consents that come before the ...


Rights, Wrongs, And Comparative Justifications, Vera Bergelson Apr 2007

Rights, Wrongs, And Comparative Justifications, Vera Bergelson

Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers

The goal of this article is to rethink the relationship between the concepts of justification and wrongdoing, which play vital roles in the theory of criminal law. Reading George P. Fletcher’s new book, The Grammar of Criminal Law, in the context of his earlier scholarship has led me to one major disagreement with Fletcher as well as with the traditional criminal law doctrine: for Fletcher and many others, wrongdoing and justification mutually exclude each other; for me, they do not.

Consider a hypothetical: a group of people are captured by criminals. The criminals are about to kill everyone but ...


Solving The Lawyer Problem In Criminal Cases, George C. Thomas Iii Feb 2007

Solving The Lawyer Problem In Criminal Cases, George C. Thomas Iii

Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers

We are learning that the vaunted American adversarial system too often fails to protect innocent defendants. Part of the problem is that indigent criminal defenders, in many parts of the country, are overburdened to the point that they cannot always provide an adequate adversarial testing of the State’s case. Part of the problem is the emotional burn out that many defenders experience. A less well known part of the problem is that the very nature of the adversarial mentality too often causes prosecutors to cut corners and thus threaten innocent defendants. “Solving the Lawyer Problem in Criminal Cases,” a ...


Parallel Courts, Elena A. Baylis Feb 2007

Parallel Courts, Elena A. Baylis

University of Pittsburgh School of Law Working Paper Series

Even as American attention is focused on Iraq’s struggles to rebuild its political and legal systems in the face of violent sectarian divisions, another fractured society – Kosovo – has just begun negotiations to resolve the question of its political independence. The persistent ethnic divisions that have obstructed Kosovo’s efforts to establish multi-ethnic “rule of law” offer lessons in transitional justice for Iraq and other states.

In Kosovo today, two parallel judicial systems each claim absolute and exclusive jurisdiction over the province. One system is sponsored by the United Nations administration in Kosovo and is mostly, although not exclusively, staffed ...


Making Crime (Almost) Disappear, George C. Thomas Iii Feb 2007

Making Crime (Almost) Disappear, George C. Thomas Iii

Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers

This essay sketches the outlines of a future world in which crime has been drastically reduced. The author proposes two radical approaches to achieve this crime reduction. Some crimes, like drunk driving, can be almost completely eliminated by using technology to prevent the operation of a vehicle by a driver with a blood alcohol greater than the permissible level. Other crimes, like larceny or burglary of expensive items, can be made extremely easy to solve by requiring the installation of micro chips that will, when activated, broadcast their location to police.

To the objection that it will be expensive to ...


Remembering Welsh White, John Burkoff Nov 2006

Remembering Welsh White, John Burkoff

University of Pittsburgh School of Law Working Paper Series

This paper was an adaptation from a eulogy for Welsh White, an esteemed Criminal Procedure professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law.


The Right To Be Hurt. Testing The Boundaries Of Consent., Vera Bergelson May 2006

The Right To Be Hurt. Testing The Boundaries Of Consent., Vera Bergelson

Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers

People's right to consent to pain, injury or death has always been one of the most controversial issues in criminal law and moral philosophy. In recent years, that issue has moved to the forefront of public, legislative, and academic debates in the United States and abroad due to a series of high-profile criminal trials, which involved consenting victims in various contexts--from sadomasochism and cannibalism to experimental medical treatment and mercy killing.

Currently, American criminal law does not recognize consent of the victim as a defense to bodily harm, except in a few historically defined circumstances. That rule has been ...


Standing Room Only: Why Fourth Amendment Exclusion And Standing No Longer Logically Coexist, Sherry F. Colb Mar 2006

Standing Room Only: Why Fourth Amendment Exclusion And Standing No Longer Logically Coexist, Sherry F. Colb

Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers

The Fourth Amendment exclusionary rule provides that a criminal defendant may suppress the fruits of unreasonable searches and seizures at his prosecution. The Fourth Amendment standing requirement limits the class of criminal defendants who may invoke the exclusionary rule to those who have personally suffered a violation of their rights. This Article argues that the two doctrines are logically inconsistent with each other. The exclusionary rule rests on a foundation of deterrence that takes as its point of departure the police officer's subjective perspective of events and asks: did the information known to him justify his conduct? The standing ...


Emotional Competence, "Rational Understanding," And The Criminal Defendant, Terry A. Maroney Mar 2006

Emotional Competence, "Rational Understanding," And The Criminal Defendant, Terry A. Maroney

University of Southern California Legal Studies Working Paper Series

Adjudicative competence, more commonly referred to as competence to stand trial, is a highly undertheorized area of law. Though it is well established that, to be competent, a criminal defendant must have a “rational” as well as “factual” understanding of her situation, the meaning of such “rational understanding” has gone largely undefined. Given the large number of criminal prosecutions in which competence is at issue, the doctrine’s instability stands in stark contrast to its importance.

This Article argues that adjudicative competence, properly understood, asks whether a criminal defendant has capacity to participate meaningfully in the host of decisions potentially ...


Justice Story Cuts The Gordian Knot Of Hung Jury Instructions, George C. Thomas Iii, Mark Greenbaum Jan 2006

Justice Story Cuts The Gordian Knot Of Hung Jury Instructions, George C. Thomas Iii, Mark Greenbaum

Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers

Constitutional law grows more complex over time. The complexity is due, in large part, to the rule of stare decisis. When faced with precedents that it does not wish to follow, the Court usually distinguishes the case before it. Thus, the constitutional landscape is littered with cases that do not fit well together. Navigating past these shoals is often difficult for courts following the Supreme Court’s lead. One example is the law governing instructions that a trial judge can give a deadlocked jury in a criminal case. The right to a jury trial entails the right to have the ...


Terrorism And The New Criminal Process, John Parry Sep 2005

Terrorism And The New Criminal Process, John Parry

University of Pittsburgh School of Law Working Paper Series

Executive and legislative actions after 9/11 demonstrate a shift in the way the federal government combats terrorism. Traditional law enforcement entities have been given new powers, and military and intelligence personnel have taken on a new prominence. Criminal prosecutions are still being brought against persons suspected of terrorist activity, but the government seems less willing to accord criminal trials a central role in anti-terror efforts. In short, we are seeing the creation of a “new criminal process” for terrorism, a process that in many cases bypasses federal courts and operates wholly outside the territorial boundaries of the United States ...


A Law And Economics Perspective On Terrorism, Nuno M. Garoupa , Jonathan Klick, Francesco Parisi Sep 2005

A Law And Economics Perspective On Terrorism, Nuno M. Garoupa , Jonathan Klick, Francesco Parisi

George Mason University School of Law Working Papers Series

This paper reviews the existing law and economics literature on crime, noting where various models might apply to the terror context. Specifically, it focuses on two strands of the literature, deterrence and incapacitation. Challenging the conventional application of the basic rational agent model of crime in the context of terrorism, it considers anti-terror measures enacted by different countries, highlighting how the details of the laws correspond to the insights from economic models of crime. In conclusion, the paper proposes an efficient sorting mechanism in which individuals will be provided with adequate incentives to reveal their type to law enforcement authorities.


Calling A Truce In The Culture Wars: From Enron To The Cia, Craig S. Lerner Aug 2005

Calling A Truce In The Culture Wars: From Enron To The Cia, Craig S. Lerner

George Mason University School of Law Working Papers Series

This Article compares and evaluates recent Congressional efforts to improve institutional “cultures” in the private and public sectors. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 was designed to upgrade corporate culture by patching up the “walls” that separate corporate management from boards of directors, accountants, lawyers, and financial analysts. The Intelligence Reform Act of 2005 took a different tack, hammering away at walls that supposedly segmented the intelligence community. The logic was that the market failed because people did not observe sufficient formalities in their dealings with one another, while the intelligence community failed precisely because people kept their distance from one ...


Life V. Death: Or Why The Death Penalty Should Marginally Deter, Charles N. W. Keckler Aug 2005

Life V. Death: Or Why The Death Penalty Should Marginally Deter, Charles N. W. Keckler

George Mason University School of Law Working Papers Series

Econometric measures of the effect of capital punishment have increasingly provided evidence that it deters homicides. However, most researchers on both sides of the death penalty debate continue to rely on rather simple assumptions about criminal behavior. I attempt to provide a more nuanced and predictive rational choice model of the incentives and disincentives to kill, with the aim of assessing to what extent the statistical findings of deterrence are in line with theoretical expectations. In particular, I examine whether it is plausible to suppose there is a marginal increase in deterrence created by increasing the penalty from life imprisonment ...


Reasonable Suspicion And Mere Hunches, Craig S. Lerner Aug 2005

Reasonable Suspicion And Mere Hunches, Craig S. Lerner

George Mason University School of Law Working Papers Series

In Terry v. Ohio, Earl Warren held that police officers could temporarily detain a suspect, provided that they could articulate the “reasonable inferences” for their suspicion, and not merely allude to a “hunch.” Since Terry, the American legal system has discounted the “mere” hunches of police officers, requiring them to articulate “specific” and “objective” observations of fact to support their decision to conduct a stop and frisk. The officer’s intuitions, gut feelings and sixth sense about a situation are all disallowed.

This dichotomy between facts and intuitions is built on sand. Emotions and intuitions can be reasonable, and reasons ...


The Reasonableness Of Probable Cause, Craig S. Lerner Aug 2005

The Reasonableness Of Probable Cause, Craig S. Lerner

George Mason University School of Law Working Papers Series

Probable cause is generally cast in judicial opinions and the scholarly literature as a fixed probability of criminal activity. In the weeks before the September 11 attacks, FBI headquarters, applying such an unbending standard, rejected a warrant application to search Zacarias Moussaoui’s laptop computer. This article, which begins with an analysis of the Moussaoui episode, argues that the probable cause standard should be calibrated to the gravity of the investigated offense and the intrusiveness of a proposed search. Tracing the evolution of probable cause from the common law through its American development, the article argues that the Supreme Court ...


Discretion And Criminal Law: The Good, The Bad, And The Mundane, George C. Thomas Iii Jul 2005

Discretion And Criminal Law: The Good, The Bad, And The Mundane, George C. Thomas Iii

Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers

Most academic papers condemn discretion in the enforcement and prosecution of crime. This essay argues that discretion should be understood to come in three varieties: good discretion, which is beneficial; bad discretion, which is typified by acts motivated by race, sex, or class considerations; and mundane discretion, which is value-neutral. The decision to pursue a drunken driver rather than a speeder, for example, is a good use of discretion while the decision to pursue one speeder rather than another based on race is bad discretion. Most motives that prompt acts of discretion, however, are value-neutral or what I call “mundane ...


Time Travel, Hovercrafts, And The Framers: James Madison Sees The Future And Rewrites The Fourth Amendment, George C. Thomas Iii Jul 2005

Time Travel, Hovercrafts, And The Framers: James Madison Sees The Future And Rewrites The Fourth Amendment, George C. Thomas Iii

Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers

The Framers could not have contemplated the interpretational problems that cloud the Fourth Amendment because police, in the modern sense, were unknown to the Framers. Also unknown to the Framers, of course, were wiretaps, drug interdiction searches, thermal imagining, helicopters, and blood tests. We can infer from the history surrounding the Fourth Amendment what the Framers hoped it would accomplish in their time. What if the Framers could have seen the future and known the kind of police techniques that are being used today? What kind of Fourth Amendment would they have written with that knowledge? This article seeks to ...


Missing Miranda's Story, A Review Of Gary L. Stuart's, Miranda: The Story Of America's Right To Remain Silent, George C. Thomas Iii Jun 2005

Missing Miranda's Story, A Review Of Gary L. Stuart's, Miranda: The Story Of America's Right To Remain Silent, George C. Thomas Iii

Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers

Miranda v. Arizona is the best known criminal procedure decision in the history of the Supreme Court. It has spawned dozens of books and hundreds of articles. The world does not need another Miranda book unless it has something new and interesting to tell readers. Unfortunately, to borrow an old cliche, the parts of Gary Stuart’s book that are new are, for the most part, not interesting and the parts that are interesting are, for the most part, not new. Stuart adds material to the Miranda storehouse about the involvement of local Arizona lawyers and judges in the original ...


Foreword: Beyond Blakely And Booker: Pondering Modern Sentencing Process, Douglas A. Berman May 2005

Foreword: Beyond Blakely And Booker: Pondering Modern Sentencing Process, Douglas A. Berman

The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law Working Paper Series

The Supreme Court’s landmark decision in Blakely v. Washington and its federal follow-up United States v. Booker are formally about the meaning and reach of the Sixth Amendment’s right to a jury trial. But these decisions implicate and reflect, both expressly and implicitly, a much broader array of constitutional provisions and principles, in particular, the Due Process Clause of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments and the notice provision of the Sixth Amendment. And the future structure and operation of modern sentencing systems may greatly depend on how courts and others approach the due process provisions and principles which ...


Have We Come Full Circle? Judicial Sentencing Discretion Restored In Booker And Fanfan, Sandra D. Jordan Apr 2005

Have We Come Full Circle? Judicial Sentencing Discretion Restored In Booker And Fanfan, Sandra D. Jordan

University of Pittsburgh School of Law Working Paper Series

The much anticipated Supreme Court decision in United States v. Booker and Fanfan has both invalidated the mandatory nature of the federal Sentencing Guidelines as well as restored judicial discretion for federal judges. With the Booker decision there is a renewed opportunity to correct some of the imbalance that came about as a result of the mandatory guidelines and the sentencing policies of the past twenty years. Booker has implications for all future sentencing as the power between the judiciary and the jury has been realigned and the power of the government has been reduced. Sentencing cannot accomplish legitimate goals ...