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The Prison Mailbox Rule: Can Represented Incarcerated Litigants Benefit?, Nico Corti Dec 2022

The Prison Mailbox Rule: Can Represented Incarcerated Litigants Benefit?, Nico Corti

Fordham Law Review

In 1988, the U.S. Supreme Court created the “Prison Mailbox Rule,” which assesses the timeliness of incarcerated litigants’ filings based on the day they hand them to prison authorities. The rule reduces the structural barriers to filing while imprisoned. Although Houston v. Lack highlighted the unique challenges that pro se incarcerated litigants face, the Prison Mailbox Rule’s subsequent federal codifications did not limit its benefits to pro se litigants, despite purportedly “reflecting” the Houston decision. Federal circuit courts of appeal today are split on whether represented people in prison can benefit from the Prison Mailbox Rule, leaving both litigants and …


Closing The Door On Permanent Incorrigibility: Juvenile Life Without Parole After Jones V. Mississippi, Juliet Liu Dec 2022

Closing The Door On Permanent Incorrigibility: Juvenile Life Without Parole After Jones V. Mississippi, Juliet Liu

Fordham Law Review

In April 2021, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Jones v. Mississippi, its latest opinion in a line of cases addressing when, if ever, a child should be sentenced to life in prison with no hope of parole or release. Although Jones purported to resolve division among lower courts over the findings that a sentencing court must make about a child defendant’s character and prospects for reform and rehabilitation, the decision will likely lead to further disagreement among courts.

This Note argues that although the Supreme Court’s jurisprudence has protected children from harsh sentences, it has also opened a Pandora’s …


The Impermissibility Of Police Deception In Juvenile Interrogations, Gina Kim Oct 2022

The Impermissibility Of Police Deception In Juvenile Interrogations, Gina Kim

Fordham Law Review

Although perjury is a criminal offense in all states and a felony in many, law enforcement may routinely lie to suspects during interrogations. This widespread, judicially authorized practice consists of interrogators making false promises of leniency that the suspect will receive a lighter sentence in exchange for a confession, and making misrepresentations about the evidence against the suspect. Police deception in interrogations becomes even more problematic when used against juvenile suspects because the psychological vulnerability of minors may lead them to succumb to deceptive pressures and even to falsely confess.

This Note explores the debate surrounding the use of police …


Sentencing After Stash Houses: Addressing Manipulation Of The Federal Sentencing Guidelines, Elizabeth Foy Gudgel Oct 2022

Sentencing After Stash Houses: Addressing Manipulation Of The Federal Sentencing Guidelines, Elizabeth Foy Gudgel

Fordham Law Review

In the realm of undercover work, law enforcement has broad discretion to define the contours of a criminal offense. Due to quantity-based provisions in the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, federal agents or their informants may coerce an individual into a higher sentencing range by escalating their behavior to align with mandatory minimums or quantifiable offense levels. Because this type of offense is police-initiated, law enforcement has discretion to select the individuals subject to these tactics and influence their eventual sentences. The defenses of sentencing entrapment and sentencing manipulation are meant to combat this discretion. However, these defenses are rarely invoked successfully …


Does Brady Apply To Supervised Release Revocation Hearings?, Alex Breindel Oct 2022

Does Brady Apply To Supervised Release Revocation Hearings?, Alex Breindel

Fordham Law Review

Many federal offenders face a term of supervised release upon leaving prison. The successor to the federal parole system, supervised release places conditions upon individuals’ freedom. Violation of a condition may result in revocation of release and reimprisonment. To revoke release, the government must prove to a judge by a preponderance of the evidence that a violation occurred. At this proceeding, known as a “revocation hearing,” the individual may contest the alleged violation and present their own evidence.

Under Brady v. Maryland and its progeny, due process requires the government to disclose material exculpatory evidence to criminal defendants. This Note …


Decarceration's Inside Partners, Seema Tahir Saifee Oct 2022

Decarceration's Inside Partners, Seema Tahir Saifee

Fordham Law Review

This Article examines a hidden phenomenon in criminal punishment. People in prison, during their incarceration, have made important—and sometimes extraordinary—strides toward reducing prison populations. In fact, stakeholders in many corners, from policy makers to researchers to abolitionists, have harnessed legal and conceptual strategies generated inside the walls to pursue decarceral strategies outside the walls. Despite this outside use of inside moves, legal scholarship has directed little attention to theorizing the potential of looking to people on the inside as partners in the long-term project of meaningfully reducing prison populations, or “decarceration.”

Building on the change-making agency and revolutionary ideation inside …


Police Vehicle Searches And Racial Profiling: An Empirical Study, Griffin Edwards, Stephen Rushin Oct 2022

Police Vehicle Searches And Racial Profiling: An Empirical Study, Griffin Edwards, Stephen Rushin

Fordham Law Review

In 1981, the U.S. Supreme Court held in New York v. Belton that police officers could lawfully search virtually anywhere in a vehicle without a warrant after the arrest of any occupant in the vehicle. Then, in 2009, the Court reversed course in Arizona v. Gant, holding that police could only engage in vehicle searches after such arrests in a smaller number of extenuating circumstances. This series of cases became a flash point for the broader debate about the regulation of policing. Law enforcement groups argued that administratively complex rules, like those established in Gant, risk officer safety. …


Criminal Justice Expertise, Benjamin Levin May 2022

Criminal Justice Expertise, Benjamin Levin

Fordham Law Review

For decades, commentators have adopted a story of mass incarceration’s rise as caused by “punitive populism.” Growing prison populations, expanding criminal codes, and raced and classed disparities in enforcement result from “pathological politics”: voters and politicians act in a vicious feedback loop, driving more criminal law and punishment. The criminal system’s problems are political. But how should society solve these political problems? Scholars often identify two kinds of approaches: (1) the technocratic, which seeks to wrest power from irrational and punitive voters, replacing electoral politics with agencies and commissions, and (2) the democratic, which treats criminal policy as insufficiently responsive …


Progressive Prosecutors Are Not Trying To Dismantle The Master’S House, And The Master Wouldn’T Let Them Anyway, Paul Butler Apr 2022

Progressive Prosecutors Are Not Trying To Dismantle The Master’S House, And The Master Wouldn’T Let Them Anyway, Paul Butler

Fordham Law Review

The first thing to note about Audre Lorde’s famous phrase “the master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house” is that it cannot literally be true. If tools can dismantle the master’s house, the master’s own tools would be good as anyone’s. The main problem would not be that the tools don’t work, but rather how to get them to the people who most need the master’s house dismantled—the enslaved ones. But the considerable work that the phrase does in social justice movements and critical theory is figurative rather than literal. It is usually intended as a rebuke of liberal …


No Justice, No Pleas: Subverting Mass Incarceration Through Defendant Collective Action, Andrew Manuel Crespo Apr 2022

No Justice, No Pleas: Subverting Mass Incarceration Through Defendant Collective Action, Andrew Manuel Crespo

Fordham Law Review

The American penal system is a system of massive, racially unjust incarceration. It is also, to quote the U.S. Supreme Court, a “system of pleas.” The latter drives the former, as coercive plea bargaining makes it possible for the state to do two things that are otherwise hard to pull off at once: increase convictions and sentence lengths. Mass incarceration is a predictable result. But while plea bargaining is intensely coercive when leveraged against individuals, the system of pleas has a structural weak point. That Achilles’ heel is exposed once we see people facing prosecution not as isolated individuals but …


The First Step Act And Individualized Review: Must Judges Apply The 18 U.S.C.   3553(A) Factors To Section 404 Petitioners?, Kielan Barua Mar 2022

The First Step Act And Individualized Review: Must Judges Apply The 18 U.S.C.   3553(A) Factors To Section 404 Petitioners?, Kielan Barua

Fordham Law Review

In 2010, the U.S. Congress amended the notorious mandatory minimum sentencing structure for crack cocaine offenses in response to the decades of harm it had caused. As the amendment was not retroactive, Congress passed the First Step Act of 2018 to allow prisoners incarcerated before 2010 to petition their original sentencing court for discretionary relief based on the new penalties. However, what exactly these courts must do when deciding whether to grant relief has divided the circuits. Some circuits require an up-to-date consideration of defendants’ individual mitigating circumstances and whether their sentences are the minimum necessary to satisfy the purposes …


Opening The Safety Valve: A Second Look At Compassionate Release Under The First Step Act, Michael T. Hamilton Mar 2022

Opening The Safety Valve: A Second Look At Compassionate Release Under The First Step Act, Michael T. Hamilton

Fordham Law Review

Under federal law, judges are generally prohibited from changing a sentence once it has been imposed. Compassionate release, to put it simply, provides a “safety valve” against this general principle, allowing federal judges to reduce a prisoner’s sentence when it is warranted by “extraordinary and compelling reasons.” For the past thirty years, statutory and bureaucratic roadblocks made compassionate release an unlikely avenue for prisoners to receive sentence reductions. With the passage of the First Step Act of 2018, the U.S. Congress made the first significant changes to the compassionate release statute in decades, permitting defendants for the first time to …


How Experts Have Dominated The Neuroscience Narrative In Criminal Cases For Twelve Decades: A Warning For The Future, Deborah W. Denno Jan 2022

How Experts Have Dominated The Neuroscience Narrative In Criminal Cases For Twelve Decades: A Warning For The Future, Deborah W. Denno

Faculty Scholarship

Phineas Gage, the man who survived impalement by a rod through his head in 1848, is considered “one of the great medical curiosities of all time.” While expert accounts of Gage's post-accident personality changes are often wildly damning and distorted, recent research shows that Gage mostly thrived, despite his trauma. Studying past cases such as Gage’s helps us imagine—and prepare for—a future of law and neuroscience in which scientific debates over the brain’s functions remain fiery, and experts divisively control how we characterize brain-injured defendants.

This Article examines how experts have long dominated the neuroscience narrative in U.S. criminal cases, …


Bargaining For Abolition, Zohra Ahmed Jan 2022

Bargaining For Abolition, Zohra Ahmed

Fordham Law Review

What if instead of seeing criminal court as an institution driven by the operation of rules, we saw it as a workplace where people labor to criminalize those with the misfortune to be prosecuted? Early observers of twentieth century urban criminal courts likened them to factories. Since then, commentators often deploy the pejorative epithet “assembly line justice” to describe criminal court’s processes. The term conveys the criticism of a mechanical system delivering a form of justice that is impersonal and fallible. Perhaps unintentionally, the epithet reveals another truth: criminal court is also a workplace, and it takes labor to keep …


An Uncertain Participant: Victim Input And The Black Box Of Discretionary Parole Release, Noah Epstein Nov 2021

An Uncertain Participant: Victim Input And The Black Box Of Discretionary Parole Release, Noah Epstein

Fordham Law Review

Little is understood about the parole release process, as state parole boards predominately operate with incredible discretion and keep their deliberations and rationales hidden from public view. Even less is understood about the intersection of the inscrutable parole release decision-making process and victim rights. As the victim rights movement mobilized in the 1970s, victims, instead of remaining passive witnesses, came to wield significant influence over the release decision process. Today, victim participation in parole proceedings is increasing as most parole boards proclaim how important victims’ voices are and, in turn, actively incorporate victim input into their release calculus. Yet, it …


Disarming Abusers And Triggering The Sixth Amendment: Are Domestic Violence Misdemeanants Guaranteed The Right To A Jury Trial?, Julia Hatheway Oct 2021

Disarming Abusers And Triggering The Sixth Amendment: Are Domestic Violence Misdemeanants Guaranteed The Right To A Jury Trial?, Julia Hatheway

Fordham Law Review

Domestic violence is a global issue, but in the United States it is especially lethal. Hundreds of women are shot and killed in the United States by intimate partners every year. Federal and state legislatures have enacted laws that focus on the issue of domestic violence and gun violence. In 1996, Congress passed the Lautenberg Amendment to the Gun Control Act of 1968, which permanently prohibits individuals convicted of domestic violence misdemeanors from possessing firearms. Twenty-nine states and the District of Columbia have also enacted laws that mirror the Lautenberg Amendment. In many jurisdictions, misdemeanor domestic violence convictions carry a …


Abridging The Fifth Amendment: Compelled Decryption, Passwords, & Biometrics, Raila Cinda Brejt Jan 2021

Abridging The Fifth Amendment: Compelled Decryption, Passwords, & Biometrics, Raila Cinda Brejt

Fordham Intellectual Property, Media and Entertainment Law Journal

Technological developments change the way we perform tasks by creating more efficient solutions to old problems and giving rise to opportunities not previously possible. Advances in communications technology have made the world feel smaller and more accessible. These changes also affect the methodology of both criminal activity and the investigative procedures of law enforcement. Our fundamental rights are challenged as judges and state actors try to strike the perfect balance between longstanding values and contemporary problems. This Note considers the Fifth Amendment challenges that arise when law enforcement attempts to obtain evidence from a criminal defendant’s encrypted device. This Note …


The Racial Architecture Of Criminal Justice, Bennett Capers Jan 2021

The Racial Architecture Of Criminal Justice, Bennett Capers

Faculty Scholarship

One of the pleasures of contributing to symposia—especially symposia where each contribution is brief—is the ability to engage in new explorations, test new ideas, and offer new provocations. I do that now in this essay about race, architecture, and criminal justice. I begin by discussing how race is imbricated in the architecture of courthouses, the quintessential place of supposed justice. I then take race and architecture a step further. If we think of architecture expansively—Lawrence Lessig’s definition of architecture as “the physical world as we find it” comes to mind—then it becomes clear that race is also imbricated in the …


Visions Of The Republic Symposium: Facts And Fictions Of Corporate Executive Accountability, Masaki Iwasaki Aug 2020

Visions Of The Republic Symposium: Facts And Fictions Of Corporate Executive Accountability, Masaki Iwasaki

Fordham Law Review Online

U.S. Senator and former Democratic presidential contender Elizabeth Warren recently proposed the Corporate Executive Accountability Act, a bill that lowers the level of mental state required to prosecute executives for any corporate crime. A nationwide debate has been raging over this Act, but most arguments have focused on the appropriateness of the relaxed requirement, and the whole picture of executive accountability is vague. This Essay reveals what the facts and fictions of corporate executive accountability are, focusing on the degree of punishment of criminal executives. The author presents the estimates of expected direct and indirect punishments of executives and considers …


Novel Perspectives On Due Process Symposium: Punishment Without Process: “Victim Impact” Proceedings For Dead Defendants, Bruce A. Green, Rebecca Roiphe Aug 2020

Novel Perspectives On Due Process Symposium: Punishment Without Process: “Victim Impact” Proceedings For Dead Defendants, Bruce A. Green, Rebecca Roiphe

Fordham Law Review Online

When women accuse powerful men of sexual assault, there is increasing public pressure to resolve any doubts in the accusers’ favor before the criminal process is over, if not from the outset. Private individuals and institutions often do so without worrying about due process, but it is different for the trial court, where the presumption of innocence is supposed to apply. This is especially true where public shaming and the accompanying reputational consequences already constitute a kind of punishment. Although they may be sympathetic to accusers, especially those whose cause is championed by a strong and popular social movement, courts …


Convictions As Guilt, Anna Roberts May 2020

Convictions As Guilt, Anna Roberts

Fordham Law Review

A curious tension exists in scholarly discourse about the criminal legal system. On the one hand, a copious body of work exposes a variety of facets of the system that jeopardize the reliability of convictions. These include factors whose influence is pervasive: the predominance of plea bargaining, for example, and the subordination of the defense. On the other hand, scholars often discuss people who have criminal convictions in a way that appears to assume crime commission. This apparent assumption obscures crucial failings of the system, muddies the role of academia, and, given the unequal distribution of criminal convictions, risks compounding …


Loss Of Self-Control, Dual-Process Theories, And Provocation, Michal Buchhandler-Raphael Apr 2020

Loss Of Self-Control, Dual-Process Theories, And Provocation, Michal Buchhandler-Raphael

Fordham Law Review

Contemporary understanding of the provocation defense views the “loss of self-control” theory as the cornerstone of this partial excuse. In considering whether to reduce murder charges to manslaughter, juries and judges rely on this theory to determine if the defendant lost self-control after experiencing intense emotional arousal and if a reasonable person would have also likely lost self-control in similar circumstances. This Article questions this conventional wisdom by examining the various flaws embedded in provocation’s loss of self-control theory. It argues that the theory is both over- and underinclusive. It is overinclusive because it provides a basis for mitigation in …


Willfulness In A Post-Robare World: Evidence Of Subjective Intent, Not Negligence Conduct, Is Needed To Show Willful Violations Of Securities Laws, Kevin Aguirre Jan 2020

Willfulness In A Post-Robare World: Evidence Of Subjective Intent, Not Negligence Conduct, Is Needed To Show Willful Violations Of Securities Laws, Kevin Aguirre

Fordham Journal of Corporate & Financial Law

The D.C. Circuit's holding in Robare Group, Ltd., v. SEC, potentially marks the end of at least twenty years of permissive judicial interpretation of the term "willful," as found in various provisions of securities laws-including the Investment Advisers Act of 1940. Traditionally, willful violations of securities laws only required evidence that defendants were aware of their conduct, not that they knew that their conduct was unlawful. This low burden of proof operates in practice as a negligence standard. However, Robare makes a key distinction between evidence of negligent conduct and "subjectively intentional" violations under section 207 of the Advisers Act …


The Role Of Intent In The Rise Of Individual Accountability In Aml-Bsa Enforcement Actions, Tyler Halloran Jan 2020

The Role Of Intent In The Rise Of Individual Accountability In Aml-Bsa Enforcement Actions, Tyler Halloran

Fordham Journal of Corporate & Financial Law

The statutory framework which prohibits individuals at financial institutions from engaging in money laundering attributes criminal or civil liability on the basis of an individual’s culpability with respect to the prohibited conduct. A recent Department of Justice policy shift has begun to place a greater focus on the prosecution of individuals within corporations. This shift has led to increased prosecutions of compliance personnel and bank officials in recent years.

Through analysis of recent cases, this Note seeks to explore how the requirement of intentional and/or willful conduct defines the potential for criminal and/or civil exposure for compliance personnel and bank …


The Case For Accountability & Transparency: How Corporate Asset Forfeiture Creates A Conflict Of Interest, Tiffany J. Klinger Jan 2020

The Case For Accountability & Transparency: How Corporate Asset Forfeiture Creates A Conflict Of Interest, Tiffany J. Klinger

Fordham Journal of Corporate & Financial Law

Asset forfeiture is a tool used by law enforcement to seize property or profits related to criminal activity. Due to the public's growing distain of asset forfeiture, congressional and state reform has attempted to curtail the use of civil asset forfeiture over the past twenty years. However, little attention has been given where asset forfeiture is used against corporations. This Note sheds light as to how asset forfeiture is used against the organizational defendant and makes the following observations: First, asset forfeiture is a powerful tool in corporate criminal proceedings; however, forfeiture lacks the procedural restraints that are placed on …


Criminal Histories And Criminal Futures, Youngjae Lee Jan 2020

Criminal Histories And Criminal Futures, Youngjae Lee

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


The Role Of “Coordinating Discovery Attorneys” In Multidefendant Federal Criminal Cases, Hannah Silverman Dec 2019

The Role Of “Coordinating Discovery Attorneys” In Multidefendant Federal Criminal Cases, Hannah Silverman

Fordham Law Review

The twenty-first century’s technological revolution has shifted the practice of law, including litigation, from being primarily paper-based to paperless. To manage the increasingly complex organization and review of evidence in civil and criminal cases, attorneys outsource legal tasks, work on teams, and use discovery coordinators. This Note examines the development of court-appointed coordinating discovery attorneys and their role in multidefendant federal criminal trials involving voluminous discovery. With a background in criminal defense and electronic discovery, these lawyers provide hands-on assistance as a way to cut costs, help overburdened and underfunded defense counsel, and improve representation of criminal defendants. In 2014, …


Pornographic Deepfakes: The Case For Federal Criminalization Of Revenge Porn’S Next Tragic Act, Rebecca A. Delfino Dec 2019

Pornographic Deepfakes: The Case For Federal Criminalization Of Revenge Porn’S Next Tragic Act, Rebecca A. Delfino

Fordham Law Review

This could happen to you. Like millions of people worldwide, you have uploaded digital photographs of yourself to the internet through social media platforms. Your pictures aren’t sexually explicit or revealing—they depict your daily life, spending time with friends or taking “selfies” on vacation. But then someone decides they don’t like you. Using an app available on any smartphone, this antagonist clips digital images of your face from your innocuous pictures and pastes them seamlessly onto the body of a person engaged in sexually explicit acts. Without your knowledge or consent, you become the “star” of a realistic, pornographic “deepfake.” …


Reframing The Punishment Test Through Modern Sex Offender Legislation, Jane Ramage Dec 2019

Reframing The Punishment Test Through Modern Sex Offender Legislation, Jane Ramage

Fordham Law Review

Modern sex offender registration and notification laws blur the distinction between criminal and civil law. Despite being labeled as civil regulatory schemes, these laws impose severe burdens on personal liberty—burdens that we tend to associate with criminal punishment. In 2003, the U.S. Supreme Court determined that at least one sex offender registration and notification program functioned as a civil remedy rather than a criminal sanction. In upholding the Alaska Sex Offender Registration Act, the Supreme Court held that the burdens imposed by the statute did not impose additional punishment on registered sex offenders and thus did not trigger the constitutional …


See No Evil, Hear No Evil: Applying The Sight And Sound Separation Protection To All Youths Who Are Tried As Adults In The Criminal Justice System, Lauren Knoke Nov 2019

See No Evil, Hear No Evil: Applying The Sight And Sound Separation Protection To All Youths Who Are Tried As Adults In The Criminal Justice System, Lauren Knoke

Fordham Law Review

American law treats youths within the criminal justice system with contrasting impulses. In some cases, the law deems youths worthy of special protections and places them within the juvenile justice system. In other situations, however, it views youths as posing distinct dangers and funnels them into justice systems designed for adults. So long as youths remain under the jurisdiction of the juvenile justice system, they are afforded the protections of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA). One of the JJDPA’s core protections, sight and sound separation, aims to prevent youths from having any visual or spoken exchanges with …