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Surprise Vs. Probability As A Metric For Proof, Edward K. Cheng, Matthew Ginther Jan 2018

Surprise Vs. Probability As A Metric For Proof, Edward K. Cheng, Matthew Ginther

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

In this Symposium issue celebrating his career, Professor Michael Risinger in Leveraging Surprise proposes using "the fundamental emotion of surprise" as a way of measuring belief for purposes of legal proof. More specifically, Professor Risinger argues that we should not conceive of the burden of proof in terms of probabilities such as 51%, 95%, or even "beyond a reasonable doubt." Rather, the legal system should reference the threshold using "words of estimative surprise" -asking jurors how surprised they would be if the fact in question were not true. Toward this goal (and being averse to cardinality), he suggests categories such ...


Judge-Jury Agreement In Criminal Cases: A Partial Replication Of Kalven And Zeisel's The American Jury, Theodore Eisenberg, Paula L. Hannaford-Agor, Valerie P. Hans, Nicole L. Waters, G. Thomas Munsterman, Stewart J. Schwab, Martin T. Wells Mar 2005

Judge-Jury Agreement In Criminal Cases: A Partial Replication Of Kalven And Zeisel's The American Jury, Theodore Eisenberg, Paula L. Hannaford-Agor, Valerie P. Hans, Nicole L. Waters, G. Thomas Munsterman, Stewart J. Schwab, Martin T. Wells

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

This study uses a new criminal case data set to partially replicate Kalven and Zeisel's classic study of judge-jury agreement. The data show essentially the same rate of judge-jury agreement as did Kalven and Zeisel for cases tried almost 50 years ago. This study also explores judge-jury agreement as a function of evidentiary strength (as reported by both judges and juries), evidentiary complexity (as reported by both judges and juries), legal complexity (as reported by judges), and locale. Regardless of which adjudicator's view of evidentiary strength is used, judges tend to convict more than juries in cases of ...