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Criminal Law

2009

University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School

Criminal law

Articles 1 - 4 of 4

Full-Text Articles in Law

Prosecutorial Regulation Versus Prosecutorial Accountability, Stephanos Bibas Apr 2009

Prosecutorial Regulation Versus Prosecutorial Accountability, Stephanos Bibas

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No government official has as much unreviewable power or discretion as the prosecutor. Few regulations bind or even guide prosecutorial discretion, and fewer still work well. Most commentators favor more external regulation by legislatures, judges, or bar authorities. Neither across-the-board legislation nor ex post review of individual cases has proven to be effective, however. Drawing on management literature, this article reframes the issue as a principal-agent problem and suggests corporate strategies for better serving the relevant stakeholders. Fear of voters could better check prosecutors, as could victim participation in individual cases. Scholars have largely neglected the most promising avenue of …


Rewarding Prosecutors For Performance, Stephanos Bibas Feb 2009

Rewarding Prosecutors For Performance, Stephanos Bibas

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Prosecutorial discretion is a problem that most scholars attack from the outside. Most scholars favor external institutional solutions, such as ex ante legislation or ex post judicial and bar review of individual cases of misconduct. At best these approaches can catch the very worst misconduct. They lack inside information and sustained oversight and cannot generate and enforce fine-grained rules to guide prosecutorial decisionmaking. The more promising alternative is to work within prosecutors' offices, to create incentives for good performance. This symposium essay explores a neglected toolbox that head prosecutors can use to influence line prosecutors: compensation and other rewards. Rewards …


A Right To Bear Firearms But Not To Use Them? Defensive Force Rules And The Increasing Effectiveness Of Non-Lethal Weapons, Paul H. Robinson Jan 2009

A Right To Bear Firearms But Not To Use Them? Defensive Force Rules And The Increasing Effectiveness Of Non-Lethal Weapons, Paul H. Robinson

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Under existing American law, advances in non-lethal weapons increasingly make the use of firearms for defense unlawful and the Second Amendment of little practical significance. As the effectiveness and availability of less lethal weapons increase, the choice of a lethal firearm for protection is a choice to use more force than is necessary, in violation of existing self-defense law. At the same time, a shift to non-lethal weapons increases the frequency of situations in which a person’s use of force is authorized because defenders with non-lethal weapons are freed from the special proportionality requirements that limit the use of deadly …


Liability Insurance At The Tort-Crime Boundary, Tom Baker Jan 2009

Liability Insurance At The Tort-Crime Boundary, Tom Baker

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This essay explores how liability insurance mediates the boundary between torts and crime. Liability insurance sometimes separates these two legal fields, for example through the application of standard insurance contract provisions that exclude insurance coverage for some crimes that are also torts. Perhaps less obviously, liability insurance also can draw parts of the tort and criminal fields together. For example, professional liability insurance civilizes the criminal law experience for some crimes that are also torts by providing defendants with an insurance-paid criminal defense that provides more than ordinary means to contest the state’s accusations. The crime-tort separation in liability insurance …