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Articles 1 - 11 of 11

Full-Text Articles in Law

The Right To A Public Trial In The Time Of Covid-19, Stephen E. Smith May 2020

The Right To A Public Trial In The Time Of Covid-19, Stephen E. Smith

Faculty Publications

Maintaining social distance in the time of COVID-19 is a public health priority. A crowded courtroom is an environment at odds with public health needs. Accordingly, until science determines otherwise, it will be necessary for judges to manage courtroom attendance and exclude the public from trials, wholly or in part. Courtrooms may be closed to the public, despite the Sixth Amendment’s right to a public trial, when the closure is justified by a strong government interest and is narrowly tailored to further that interest. Typically, this heightened scrutiny is applied on a case-by-case basis and turns on a case ...


Testimonial Is As Testimonial Does, Ben L. Trachtenberg Jan 2014

Testimonial Is As Testimonial Does, Ben L. Trachtenberg

Faculty Publications

In December 2012, the Florida Law Review published Ben Trachtenberg’s article “Confronting Coventurers: Coconspirator Hearsay, Sir Walter Raleigh, and the Sixth Amendment Confrontation Clause,” 64 Fla. L. Rev. 1669 (2012). Using the example of hearsay admitted in criminal prosecutions related to the Holy Land Foundation, the article argued that under Crawford v. Washington, courts had begun admitting unreliable hearsay against criminal defendants that previously would have been barred under Ohio v. Roberts, the Confrontation Clause case upended by Crawford.

Richard D. Friedman, the Alene and Allan F. Smith Professor of Law at the University of Michigan, responded in “The ...


Confronting Coventurers: Coconspirator Hearsay, Sir Walter Raleigh, And The Sixth Amendment Confrontation Clause, Ben L. Trachtenberg Jan 2012

Confronting Coventurers: Coconspirator Hearsay, Sir Walter Raleigh, And The Sixth Amendment Confrontation Clause, Ben L. Trachtenberg

Faculty Publications

Using the example of a recent major terrorism prosecution, this article addresses “coventurer hearsay” in the context of the ongoing Confrontation Clause debate concerning the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Crawford v. Washington. Courts have recently begun admitting hearsay evidence pursuant to a revisionist interpretation of the coconspirator statement exception to the hearsay rule. Under the new “lawful joint venture” theory, a hearsay statement may be admitted as a coconspirator statement if made in furtherance of a “joint undertaking” - defined as pretty much any cooperative activity - even if the “conspiracy” is not illegal. Because this new interpretation of ...


Does The Lawyer Make A Difference? Public Defender V. Appointed Counsel, Peter A. Joy, Kevin C. Mcmunigal Jan 2012

Does The Lawyer Make A Difference? Public Defender V. Appointed Counsel, Peter A. Joy, Kevin C. Mcmunigal

Faculty Publications

A recent study found that poor criminal defendants in Philadelphia who were represented by court-appointed private lawyers were more often found guilty and sentenced to more time in prison than similarly situated defendants represented by public defenders. In this column, we review the details of the study, its findings, and its ethical and constitutional implications.


Prolegomenon On The Status Of The Hopey, Changey Thing In American Criminal Justice, Frank O. Bowman Iii Dec 2010

Prolegomenon On The Status Of The Hopey, Changey Thing In American Criminal Justice, Frank O. Bowman Iii

Faculty Publications

This is an introductory essay to Volume 23, Number 2, of the FEDERAL SENTENCING REPORTER, which considers the state of American criminal justice policy in 2010, two years after the "Change" election of 2008. Part I of the essay paints a statistical picture of trends in federal criminal practice and sentencing over the last half-decade or so, with particular emphasis on sentence severity and the degree of regional and inter-judge sentencing disparity. The statistics suggest that the expectation that the 2005 Booker decision would produce a substantial increase in the exercise of judicial sentencing discretion and a progressive abandonment of ...


Debacle: How The Supreme Court Has Mangled American Sentencing Law And How It Might Yet Be Mended, Frank O. Bowman Iii Jan 2010

Debacle: How The Supreme Court Has Mangled American Sentencing Law And How It Might Yet Be Mended, Frank O. Bowman Iii

Faculty Publications

This Article argues that the line of Supreme Court Sixth Amendment jury right cases that began with McMillan v. Pennsylvania in 1986, crescendoed in Blakely v. Washington and United States v. Booker in 2004-2005, and continued in 2009 in cases such as Oregon v. Ice, has been a colossal judicial failure. First, the Court has failed to provide a logically coherent, constitutionally based answer to the fundamental question of what limits the Constitution places on the roles played by the institutional actors in the criminal justice system. It failed to recognize that defining, adjudicating and punishing crimes implicates both the ...


Coconspirators, “Coventurers,” And The Exception Swallowing The Hearsay Rule, Ben L. Trachtenberg Jan 2010

Coconspirators, “Coventurers,” And The Exception Swallowing The Hearsay Rule, Ben L. Trachtenberg

Faculty Publications

In recent years, prosecutors - sometimes with the blessing of courts - have argued that when proving the existence of a “conspiracy” to justify admission of evidence under the Coconspirator Exception to the Hearsay Rule, they need show only that the declarant and the defendant were “coventurers” with a common purpose, not coconspirators with an illegal purpose. Indeed, government briefs and court decisions specifically disclaim the need to show any wrongful goal whatsoever. This Article contends that such a reading of the Exception is mistaken and undesirable. Conducted for this article, a survey of thousands of court decisions, including the earliest English ...


Mr. Madison Meets A Time Machine: The Political Science Of Federal Sentencing Reform, Frank O. Bowman Iii Oct 2005

Mr. Madison Meets A Time Machine: The Political Science Of Federal Sentencing Reform, Frank O. Bowman Iii

Faculty Publications

This is the third in a series of articles analyzing the current turmoil in federal criminal sentencing and offering suggestions for improvements in the federal sentencing system. The first article, "The Failure of the Federal Sentencing Guidelines: A Structural Analysis," 105 COLUMBIA L. REV. 1315 (2005), analyzed the structural failures of the complex federal sentencing guidelines system, particularly those arising from imbalances among the primary institutional sentencing actors - Congress, the judiciary, the Justice Department, and the U.S. Sentencing Commission. The second, "Beyond BandAids: A Proposal for Reconfiguring Federal Sentencing After Booker," 2005 U. OF CHICAGO LEGAL FORUM 149 (2005 ...


Function Over Formalism: A Provisional Theory Of The Constitutional Law Of Crime And Punishment, Frank O. Bowman Iii Oct 2004

Function Over Formalism: A Provisional Theory Of The Constitutional Law Of Crime And Punishment, Frank O. Bowman Iii

Faculty Publications

This Article is, in effect, the second half of the author's argument against the Supreme Court's interpretation of the Sixth Amendment in Blakely v. Washington. The first half appeared in "Train Wreck? Or Can the Federal Sentencing System Be Saved? A Plea for Rapid Reversal of Blakely v. Washington," 41 American Criminal Law Review 217 (2004), and made a pragmatic, consequentialist argument against the Blakely result. This Article takes the next step of providing an alternative constitutional model of criminal sentencing to that offered by Justice Scalia in Blakely. The model emphasizes that a good constitutional model should ...


Note, A Rule Unfit For All Seasons: Monitoring Of Attorney-Client Communication Violates Privilege And The Sixth Amendment, Avidan Y. Cover Jan 2002

Note, A Rule Unfit For All Seasons: Monitoring Of Attorney-Client Communication Violates Privilege And The Sixth Amendment, Avidan Y. Cover

Faculty Publications

No abstract provided.


'The Question Is Which Is To Be Master - That's All': Cunningham, Claiborne, Rita And The Sixth Amendment Muddle, Frank O. Bowman Iii Jan 2001

'The Question Is Which Is To Be Master - That's All': Cunningham, Claiborne, Rita And The Sixth Amendment Muddle, Frank O. Bowman Iii

Faculty Publications

Three things are clear from the Supreme Court's opinion in Cunningham v. California, in which the Court struck down California's sentencing law as violative of the Sixth Amendment, and from the briefs in the pending cases involving post-Booker federal sentencing, Claiborne v. United States and Rita v. United States. First, the Supreme Court has plunged Sixth Amendment sentencing law deep down the rabbit hole. Second, both the government and petitioners in Claiborne and Rita have adopted indefensible positions. Third, neither the parties nor the amici in Rita and Claiborne have offered the Court any real help in crafting ...