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Full-Text Articles in Law

How Criminal Code Drafting Form Can Restrain Prosecutorial And Legislative Excesses: Consolidated Offense Drafting, Paul H. Robinson, Matthew Kussmaul, Muhammad Sarahne Mar 2021

How Criminal Code Drafting Form Can Restrain Prosecutorial And Legislative Excesses: Consolidated Offense Drafting, Paul H. Robinson, Matthew Kussmaul, Muhammad Sarahne

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Solving criminal justice problems typically requires the enactment of new rules or the modification of existing ones. But there are some serious problems that can best be solved simply by altering the way in which the existing rules are drafted rather than by altering their content. This is the case with two of the most serious problems in criminal justice today: the problem of overlapping criminal offenses that create excessive prosecutorial charging discretion and the problem of legislative inconsistency and irrationality in grading offenses.

After examining these two problems and demonstrating their serious effects in perverting criminal justice, the essay ...


“Second Looks, Second Chances”: Collaborating With Lifers Inc. On A Video About Commutation Of Lwop Sentences, Regina Austin Jan 2019

“Second Looks, Second Chances”: Collaborating With Lifers Inc. On A Video About Commutation Of Lwop Sentences, Regina Austin

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

In Pennsylvania, life means life without the possibility of parole (“LWOP”) or “death by incarceration.” Although executive commutation offers long serving rehabilitated lifers hope of release, in the past 20 years, only 8 commutations have been granted by the state’s governors. This article describes the collaboration between an organization of incarcerated persons serving LWOP and the law-school-based Penn Program on Documentaries and the Law that produced a video supporting increased commutations for Pennsylvania lifers. The article details the methodology of collaborative videomaking employed, the strategic decisions over content that were impacted by the politics of commutation, and the contributions ...


Decentralizing Crime Control: The Political Economy Perspective, Doron Teichman Jun 2006

Decentralizing Crime Control: The Political Economy Perspective, Doron Teichman

Michigan Law Review

In an article recently published on the pages of this Law Review, The Market for Criminal Justice: Federalism, Crime Control, and Jurisdictional Competition ("The Market"), I put forward a theory of crime control in a decentralized government. Specifically, I made three distinct claims. First, criminal justice policies affect the geographic decision of criminals as to where to commit their crimes. Other things being equal, criminal activity will tend to shift to areas in which the expected sanction is lower. Second, local jurisdictions attempting to lower their crime rates will react to policies adopted by neighboring jurisdictions and try to keep ...


The Political Market For Criminal Justice, Rachel E. Barkow Jun 2006

The Political Market For Criminal Justice, Rachel E. Barkow

Michigan Law Review

In 2004, the number of individuals incarcerated in the United States exceeded the two million mark. The current incarceration rate in the United States is 726 per 100,000 residents, the highest incarceration rate in the Western world and a dramatic increase from just three decades ago. Not only are more people serving time, but sentences have markedly lengthened. What should we make of these trends? The answer has been easy for most legal scholars: to them, the incarceration rate in the United States is too high, and reforms are necessary to lower sentences. But many political leaders and voters ...


Crime, Criminals, And Competitive Crime Control, Wayne A. Logan Jun 2006

Crime, Criminals, And Competitive Crime Control, Wayne A. Logan

Michigan Law Review

Given the negative consequences of crime, it should come as no surprise that states will endeavor to make their dominions less hospitable to potential criminal actors. This predisposition, when played out on a national stage, would appear ripe for a dynamic in which states will seek to "out-tough" one another, leading to a spiral of detrimental competitiveness. Doran Teichman, in an article recently appearing in these pages, advances just such a view. Teichman posits that the decentralized structure of America's federalist system provides states with "an incentive to increasingly harshen" their crime control efforts, with the net result being ...