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Full-Text Articles in Law

Criminal Advisory Juries: A Sensible Compromise For Jury Sentencing Advocates, Kurt A. Holtzman Apr 2021

Criminal Advisory Juries: A Sensible Compromise For Jury Sentencing Advocates, Kurt A. Holtzman

Northwestern Journal of Law & Social Policy

Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch recently noted that “juries in our constitutional order exercise supervisory authority over the judicial function by limiting the judge’s power to punish.” Yet in the majority of jurisdictions, contemporary judge-only sentencing practices neuter juries of their supervisory authority by divorcing punishment from guilt decisions. Moreover, without a chance to voice public disapproval at sentencing, juries are muted in their ability to express tailored, moral condemnation for distinct criminal acts. Although the modern aversion to jury sentencing is neither historically nor empirically justified, jury sentencing opponents are rightly cautious of abdicating sentencing power to laypeople ...


Distinguishing Plea Discounts And Trial Penalties, Ben Grunwald Mar 2021

Distinguishing Plea Discounts And Trial Penalties, Ben Grunwald

Georgia State University Law Review

We know that criminal defendants who plead guilty receive lower sentences than those convicted at trial, but there’s widespread disagreement about why. One camp of scholars believes this plea-trial differential represents a deeply troubling and coercive penalty; a second believes it’s merely a freedom-enhancing discount; and a third denies any meaningful distinction between the two at all. One reason for this disagreement is theoretical—it’s not at all clear what these concepts mean. Another is empirical—in the absence of precise conceptual definitions, we lack relevant data because scholars don’t know what to look for when ...


Imagining The Progressive Prosecutor, Benjamin Levin Jan 2021

Imagining The Progressive Prosecutor, Benjamin Levin

Articles

As criminal justice reform has attracted greater public support, a new brand of district attorney candidate has arrived: the “progressive prosecutors.” Commentators increasingly have keyed on “progressive prosecutors” as offering a promising avenue for structural change, deserving of significant political capital and academic attention. This Essay asks an unanswered threshold question: what exactly is a “progressive prosecutor”? Is that a meaningful category at all, and if so, who is entitled to claim the mantle? In this Essay, I argue that “progressive prosecutor” means many different things to many different people. These differences in turn reveal important fault lines in academic ...


Abolish Municipal Courts: A Response To Professor Natapoff, Brendan Roediger Jan 2021

Abolish Municipal Courts: A Response To Professor Natapoff, Brendan Roediger

All Faculty Scholarship

If we are serious about disrupting the generational reproduction of the racial social order, we are going to have to learn to let go. Taking up the legacy of criminal municipal courts and racial control, this Response argues against the practice of prescribing from the traditional “medication list” of liberal reforms (substantive, procedural, and “democratizing”) without grappling with whether a system or apparatus is so inextricably bound up with the maintenance of race and class hierarchy that it should be demolished. I assert that we should always ask whether something is redeemable before we ask whether it is reformable. In ...


Dirty Johns: Prosecuting Prostituted Women In Pennsylvania And The Need For Reform, Mckay Lewis Oct 2020

Dirty Johns: Prosecuting Prostituted Women In Pennsylvania And The Need For Reform, Mckay Lewis

Dickinson Law Review

Prostitution is as old as human civilization itself. Throughout history, public attitudes toward prostituted women have varied greatly. But adverse consequences of the practice—usually imposed by men purchasing sexual services—have continuously been present. Prostituted women have regularly been subject to violence, discrimination, and indifference from their clients, the general public, and even law enforcement and judicial officers.

Jurisdictions can choose to adopt one of three general approaches to prostitution regulation: (1) criminalization; (2) legalization/ decriminalization; or (3) a hybrid approach known as the Nordic Model. Criminalization regimes are regularly associated with disparate treatment between prostituted women and their ...


The Need For A Historical Exception To Grand Jury Secrecy In The Federal Rules Of Criminal Procedure, Daniel Aronsohn Aug 2020

The Need For A Historical Exception To Grand Jury Secrecy In The Federal Rules Of Criminal Procedure, Daniel Aronsohn

Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review

No abstract provided.


Narrative, Culture, And Individuation: A Criminal Defense Lawyer’S Race-Conscious Approach To Reduce Implicit Bias For Latinxs, Walter I. Goncalves Jr. Jun 2020

Narrative, Culture, And Individuation: A Criminal Defense Lawyer’S Race-Conscious Approach To Reduce Implicit Bias For Latinxs, Walter I. Goncalves Jr.

Seattle Journal for Social Justice

No abstract provided.


Griffin V. Illinois: Justice Independent Of Wealth, Neil Sobol May 2020

Griffin V. Illinois: Justice Independent Of Wealth, Neil Sobol

Faculty Scholarship

More than sixty years ago in Griffin v. Illinois, Justice Hugo Black opined that equal justice cannot exist as long as “the kind of trial a man gets depends on the amount of money he has.” While Griffin dealt with the limited issue of the inability of a defendant to pay for an appellate transcript, the Supreme Court and legislatures would subsequently extend Black’s equal justice analysis to cases involving other forms of criminal justice debt assessed at trial, appeal, incarceration, and probation. Despite the promise of these judicial and legislative pronouncements, indigent defendants, relative to defendants with financial ...


Littering For $500: How Does Judicial Estoppel Solve The Problems That Factually Baseless Pleas Pose To The Double Jeopardy Clause?, Rob Mangone Jan 2020

Littering For $500: How Does Judicial Estoppel Solve The Problems That Factually Baseless Pleas Pose To The Double Jeopardy Clause?, Rob Mangone

Washington University Law Review

A factually baseless plea is one entered by a defendant for an offense that the defense, prosecution, and judge know that the defendant did not commit. Factually baseless pleas undermine justice. Inherently, these pleas are lies that our system has adopted to patch together a case-by-case attempt to render fair verdicts. While these factually baseless pleas may help individual defendants receive lenient sentences and may allow prosecutors and judges to quickly clear their caseloads, they do not provide a consistent and predictable criminal legal system. These pleas undermine the intent of the legislature because the crimes that the legislature defined ...


Replacing Death With Life? The Rise Of Lwop In The Context Of Abolitionist Campaigns In The United States, Michelle Miao Jan 2020

Replacing Death With Life? The Rise Of Lwop In The Context Of Abolitionist Campaigns In The United States, Michelle Miao

Northwestern Journal of Law & Social Policy

On the basis of fifty-four elite interviews[1] with legislators, judges, attorneys, and civil society advocates as well as a state-by-state data survey, this Article examines the complex linkage between the two major penal trends in American society during the past decades: a declining use of capital punishment across the United States and a growing population of prisoners serving “life without the possibility of parole” or “LWOP” sentences. The main contribution of the research is threefold. First, the research proposes to redefine the boundary between life and death in relation to penal discourses regarding the death penalty and LWOP. LWOP ...


Detention By Any Other Name, Sandra G. Mayson Jan 2020

Detention By Any Other Name, Sandra G. Mayson

Scholarly Works

An unaffordable bail requirement has precisely the same effect as an order of pretrial detention: the accused person is jailed pending trial. It follows as a logical matter that an order requiring an unaffordable bail bond as a condition of release should be subject to the same substantive and procedural protections as an order denying bail altogether. Yet this has not been the practice.

This Article lays out the logical and legal case for the proposition that an order that functionally imposes detention must be treated as an order of detention. It addresses counterarguments and complexities, including both empirical and ...


What's Wrong With Police Unions?, Benjamin Levin Jan 2020

What's Wrong With Police Unions?, Benjamin Levin

Articles

In an era of declining labor power, police unions stand as a rare success story for worker organizing—they exert political clout and negotiate favorable terms for their members. Yet, despite broad support for unionization on the political left, police unions have become public enemy number one for academics and activists concerned about race and police violence. Much criticism of police unions focuses on their obstructionist nature and how they prioritize the interests of their members over the interests of the communities they police. These critiques are compelling—police unions shield officers and block oversight. But, taken seriously, they often ...


Criminal Law In Crisis, Benjamin Levin Jan 2020

Criminal Law In Crisis, Benjamin Levin

Articles

In this Essay, I offer a brief account of how the COVID-19 pandemic lays bare the realities and structural flaws of the carceral state. I provide two primary examples or illustrations, but they are not meant to serve as an exhaustive list. Rather, by highlighting these issues, problems, or (perhaps) features, I mean to suggest that this moment of crisis should serve not just as an opportunity to marshal resources to address the pandemic, but also as a chance to address the harsh realities of the U.S. criminal system. Further, my claim isn’t that criminal law is in ...


Ethical Considerations For Prosecutors: How Recent Advancements Have Changed The Face Of Prosecution, Joshua L. Sandoval Jan 2020

Ethical Considerations For Prosecutors: How Recent Advancements Have Changed The Face Of Prosecution, Joshua L. Sandoval

St. Mary's Journal on Legal Malpractice & Ethics

The prosecutor acts as a minister of justice with sweeping discretion to charge an individual with a crime, plea a case in a manner supported by the strength of the evidence, proceed to trial on a case, and even dismiss a case. He must balance the interest of the victim, the community, and the constitutional rights of the accused in every decision he makes.

This article will explore the role of the American prosecutor and discuss various ethical issues encountered on a daily basis. After a brief introduction, the author will succinctly discuss the history of the prosecutor and will ...


Unreasonable Revelations: God Told Me To Kill, Linda Ross Meyer Sep 2019

Unreasonable Revelations: God Told Me To Kill, Linda Ross Meyer

Pace Law Review

This Article focuses on one extreme example of the law’s response to unreasonable revelations that is starkly presented in a series of unsettling murders: those involving criminal defendants who claim they committed their crime because God told them to do it—known as “deific decree” cases. This example of the conflict between revelation and reason tests the limits of law’s ability to understand and countenance revelation when the stakes are highest. The deific decree cases also present the hardest epistemological problems, because the defendant claims that the experience of God’s command is self-authenticating—a position fundamentally at ...


The Death Penalty As Incapacitation, Marah S. Mcleod Aug 2019

The Death Penalty As Incapacitation, Marah S. Mcleod

Marah McLeod

Courts and commentators give scant attention to the incapacitation rationale for capital punishment, focusing instead on retribution and deterrence. The idea that execution may be justified to prevent further violence by dangerous prisoners is often ignored in death penalty commentary. The view on the ground could not be more different. Hundreds of executions have been premised on the need to protect society from dangerous offenders. Two states require a finding of future dangerousness for any death sentence, and over a dozen others treat it as an aggravating factor that turns murder into a capital crime.

How can courts and commentators ...


Due Process Supreme Court Appellate Division Jul 2019

Due Process Supreme Court Appellate Division

Touro Law Review

No abstract provided.


Due Process People V. Scott (Decided June 5, 1996) Jul 2019

Due Process People V. Scott (Decided June 5, 1996)

Touro Law Review

No abstract provided.


Due Process Court Of Appeals Jul 2019

Due Process Court Of Appeals

Touro Law Review

No abstract provided.


Supreme Court Queens County Jul 2019

Supreme Court Queens County

Touro Law Review

No abstract provided.


Double Jeopardy Jul 2019

Double Jeopardy

Touro Law Review

No abstract provided.


Skinning The Cat: How Mandatory Psychiatric Evaluations For Animal Cruelty Offenders Can Prevent Future Violence, Ashley Kunz Jun 2019

Skinning The Cat: How Mandatory Psychiatric Evaluations For Animal Cruelty Offenders Can Prevent Future Violence, Ashley Kunz

The Scholar: St. Mary's Law Review on Race and Social Justice

In 2017, the Texas legislature amended Texas Penal Code § 42.092, which governs acts of cruelty against non-livestock animals. The statute in its current form makes torturing, killing, or seriously injuring a non-livestock animal a third degree felony, while less serious offenses carry either a state jail felony or a Class A misdemeanor charge.

While a step in the right direction, Texas law is not comprehensive in that it fails to address a significant aspect of animal cruelty offenses: mental illness. For over fifteen years, Texas Family Code § 54.0407 has required psychiatric counseling for juveniles convicted of cruelty to ...


Class V. United States: An Imperfect Application Of The Menna-Blackledge Doctrine To Post-Guilty Plea Constitutional Claims, Nikolaus Albright Apr 2019

Class V. United States: An Imperfect Application Of The Menna-Blackledge Doctrine To Post-Guilty Plea Constitutional Claims, Nikolaus Albright

Maryland Law Review

No abstract provided.


Multiple Foster Care Placements Should Be Considered A Mitigating Factor In Criminal Proceedings, Daniel Pollack, Khaya Novick Eisenberg Dr., Amanda Dolce Esq. Mar 2019

Multiple Foster Care Placements Should Be Considered A Mitigating Factor In Criminal Proceedings, Daniel Pollack, Khaya Novick Eisenberg Dr., Amanda Dolce Esq.

Ohio Northern University Law Review

No abstract provided.


Reforming Competence Restoration Statutes: An Outpatient Model, Susan A. Mcmahon Mar 2019

Reforming Competence Restoration Statutes: An Outpatient Model, Susan A. Mcmahon

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

Defendants who suffer from mental illness and are found incompetent to stand trial are often ordered committed to an inpatient mental health facility to restore their competence, even if outpatient care may be the better treatment option. Inpatient facilities are overcrowded and place the defendants on long waiting lists. Some defendants then spend weeks, months, or even years in their jail cell, waiting for a transfer to a hospital bed.

Outpatient competence restoration programs promise to relieve this pressure. But even if every state suddenly opened a robust outpatient competence restoration program, an obstacle looms: the statutes governing competence restoration ...


Honoring Innocent Until Proven Guilty: Switching The Default Rule From Pretrial Detention To Pretrial Release In Texas's Bail System, Stephen Rispoli Feb 2019

Honoring Innocent Until Proven Guilty: Switching The Default Rule From Pretrial Detention To Pretrial Release In Texas's Bail System, Stephen Rispoli

Texas A&M Law Review

Texas’s current prison population consists of far more pretrial detainees than convicted criminals. Despite United States and Texas constitutional protections, the default rule in many jurisdictions, including Texas, detains misdemeanor and non-violent felony defendants unless they can post a monetary bond or get a surety to post the bond for them (“bail bond”) to obtain their release. Most pretrial detainees remain detained due not to their alleged dangerousness, but rather because they simply cannot afford to post bail (or get someone to post it for them). As a result, many pretrial detainees find themselves choosing between hamstringing their financial ...


Federal Guilty Pleas: Inequities, Indigence And The Rule 11 Process, Julian A. Cook Jan 2019

Federal Guilty Pleas: Inequities, Indigence And The Rule 11 Process, Julian A. Cook

Scholarly Works

In 2017 and 2018, the Supreme Court issued two little-noticed decisions—Lee v. United States and Class v. United States. While neither case captured the attention of the national media nor generated meaningful academic commentary, both cases are well deserving of critical examination for reasons independent of the issues presented to the Court. They deserve review because of a consequential shared fact; a fact representative of a commonplace, yet largely overlooked, federal court practice that routinely disadvantages the indigent (and disproportionately minority populations), and compromises the integrity of arguably the most consequential component of the federal criminal justice process. In ...


The Effects Of Voluntary And Presumptive Sentencing Guidelines, Stephen Rushin, Josph Colquitt, Griffin Sims Edwards Jan 2019

The Effects Of Voluntary And Presumptive Sentencing Guidelines, Stephen Rushin, Josph Colquitt, Griffin Sims Edwards

Faculty Publications & Other Works

This Article empirically illustrates that the introduction of voluntary and presumptive sentencing guidelines at the state-level can contribute to statistically significant reductions in sentence length, inter-judge disparities, and racial disparities.

For much of American history, judges had largely unguided discretion to select criminal sentences within statutorily authorized ranges. But in the mid-to-late twentieth century, states and the federal government began experimenting with sentencing guidelines designed to reign in judicial discretion to ensure that similarly situated offenders received comparable sentences. Some states have made their guidelines voluntary, while others have made their guidelines presumptive or mandatory, meaning that judges must generally ...


The Effects Of Voluntary And Presumptive Sentencing Guidelines, Stephen Rushin, Griffin Sims Edwards, Josph Colquitt Jan 2019

The Effects Of Voluntary And Presumptive Sentencing Guidelines, Stephen Rushin, Griffin Sims Edwards, Josph Colquitt

Faculty Publications & Other Works

This Article empirically illustrates that the introduction of voluntary and presumptive sentencing guidelines at the state-level can contribute to statistically significant reductions in sentence length, inter-judge disparities, and racial disparities.

For much of American history, judges had largely unguided discretion to select criminal sentences within statutorily authorized ranges. But in the mid-to-late twentieth century, states and the federal government began experimenting with sentencing guidelines designed to reign in judicial discretion to ensure that similarly situated offenders received comparable sentences. Some states have made their guidelines voluntary, while others have made their guidelines presumptive or mandatory, meaning that judges must generally ...


The Left's Law-And-Order Agenda, Aya Gruber Jan 2019

The Left's Law-And-Order Agenda, Aya Gruber

Articles

No abstract provided.