Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Evidence Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Articles 1 - 2 of 2

Full-Text Articles in Evidence

"He Looks Guilty": Reforming Good Character Evidence To Undercut The Presumption Of Guilt., Josephine Ross Jun 2004

"He Looks Guilty": Reforming Good Character Evidence To Undercut The Presumption Of Guilt., Josephine Ross

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

Juries often use short-cuts to determine the character of the accused, such as their job, age, race, gender, marital status, or what the person looks like. These short-cuts often substitute for character evidence in courtrooms across the United States, adding to the divide in the criminal justice system today. This problem provides a lens to examine the character evidence rules and how they are implemented. Rules governing good and bad character evidence themselves have been turned on their head. A defendant’s right to put in good character has been called “deeply imbedded in our jurisprudence.” Nevertheless, the rules currently ...


Judges As Film Critics: New Approaches To Filmic Evidence, Jessica M. Silbey Jan 2004

Judges As Film Critics: New Approaches To Filmic Evidence, Jessica M. Silbey

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Article exposes internal contradictions in case law concerning the use and admissibility of film as evidence. Based on a review of more than ninety state and federal cases dating from 1923 to the present, the Article explains how the source of these contradictions is the frequent miscategorization of film as "demonstrative evidence, "evidence that purports to illustrate other evidence, rather than to be directly probative of some fact at issue. The Article further demonstrates how these contradictions are based on two venerable jurisprudential anxieties. One is the concern about the growing trend toward replacing the traditional testimony of live ...