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'False But Highly Persuasive:' How Wrong Were The Probability Estimates In Mcdaniel V. Brown?, David H. Kaye Jan 2009

'False But Highly Persuasive:' How Wrong Were The Probability Estimates In Mcdaniel V. Brown?, David H. Kaye

Journal Articles

In McDaniel v. Brown, the Supreme Court will review the use of DNA evidence in a 1994 trial for sexual assault and attempted murder. The Court granted certiorari to consider two procedural issues - the standard of federal postconviction review of a state jury verdict for sufficiency of the evidence, and the district court's decision to allow the prisoner to supplement the record of trials, appeals, and state postconviction proceedings with a geneticist's letter twelve years after the trial.

This essay clarifies the nature and extent of the errors in the presentation of the DNA evidence in Brown. It ...


Diminishing Probable Cause And Minimalist Searches, Kit Kinports Jan 2009

Diminishing Probable Cause And Minimalist Searches, Kit Kinports

Journal Articles

This paper comments on recent Supreme Court opinions that have used phrases such as "reasonable belief" and "reason to believe" when analyzing intrusions that generally require proof of probable cause. Historically, the Court used these terms as shorthand references for both probable cause and reasonable suspicion. While this lack of precision was unobjectionable when the concepts were interchangeable, that has not been true since Terry v. Ohio created a distinction between the two standards. When the Justices then resurrect these terms without situating them in the dichotomy between probable cause and reasonable suspicion, it is not clear whether they are ...