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Full-Text Articles in Law

Look Who's Extrapolating: A Reply To Hoffmann, Valerie West, Jeffery Fagan, James S. Liebman Jan 2001

Look Who's Extrapolating: A Reply To Hoffmann, Valerie West, Jeffery Fagan, James S. Liebman

Faculty Scholarship

In late March, a reporter called with news of a pirated copy of Professor Joseph Hoffinann's soon-to-be-published "attack" on our study, A Broken System: Error Rates in Capital Cases, 1973-1995. Did we care to comment? Obtaining our own copy revealed that Professor Hoffmann's fusillade missed its mark (he misstates what we did) and boomeranged (his mischaracterizations of our analysis accurately describe his own). We do care to comment, and Hoffmann and the Indiana Law Journal have graciously let us do so.

Hoffmann's main claim is that we "extrapolated" the 68% rate of reversible error we reported for ...


Joel Feinberg On Crime And Punishment: Exploring The Relationship Between The Moral Limits Of The Criminal Law And The Expressive Function Of Punishment, Bernard Harcourt Jan 2001

Joel Feinberg On Crime And Punishment: Exploring The Relationship Between The Moral Limits Of The Criminal Law And The Expressive Function Of Punishment, Bernard Harcourt

Faculty Scholarship

When I was originally approached to participate in this Symposium on the work and legacy of Joel Feinberg, I immediately began thinking about the influence of his essay The Expressive Function of Punishment on contemporary criminal law theory in the United States. That essay has contributed significantly to a growing body of scholarship associated with the resurgence of interest inexpressive theories of law. In the criminal law area, the expressivist movement traces directly and foremost to Feinberg's essay. As Carol Steiker observes, "Joel Feinberg can be credited with inaugurating the "expressivist" turn in punishment theory with his influential essay ...


Guns, Crime, And Punishment In America, Bernard Harcourt Jan 2001

Guns, Crime, And Punishment In America, Bernard Harcourt

Faculty Scholarship

There are over 200 million firearms in private hands in the United States, more than a third of which are handguns. In 1993 alone, it is estimated that 1.3 million victims of serious violent crime faced an offender with a gun. In 1999, there were approximately 563,000 such victims. Estimates of defensive uses of firearms – situations where individuals used a gun to protect themselves, someone else, or their property – range from 65,000 to 2.5 million per year. Punishments for crimes committed with a firearm are severe: under the federal firearms enhancement statute, the mandatory minimum sentence ...


"Project Exile" And The Allocation Of Federal Law Enforcement Authority, Daniel Richman Jan 2001

"Project Exile" And The Allocation Of Federal Law Enforcement Authority, Daniel Richman

Faculty Scholarship

With each report of violent crime statistics (whether rising or falling) or of the latest firearms outrage, we hear the antiphony of the gun control debate. Advocates of increased federal regulation decry the inadequacies of a regime that permits relatively free access to firearms and argue that the availability of guns is itself a spur to more deadly violence. Advocates of minimal regulation, for their part, condemn measures that, they say, will primarily penalize law-abiding citizens, and instead call for more vigorous enforcement of existing laws, targeting "criminals," not their weapons. When the antiphony intrudes on funerals, the effect can ...


Criminal Theory In The Twentieth Century, George P. Fletcher Jan 2001

Criminal Theory In The Twentieth Century, George P. Fletcher

Faculty Scholarship

The theoretical inquiry into the foundations of criminal law in the twentieth century, in both civil and common law traditions, is assayed by the consideration of seven main currents or trends. First, the structure of offenses is examined in light of the bipartite, tripartite, and quadripartite modes of analysis. Second, competing theories of culpability – normative and descriptive – are weighed in connection with their important ramifications for the presumption of proof and the allocation of the burden of persuasion on defenses. Third, the struggle with alternatives to punishment for the control and commitment of dangerous but non-criminal persons is compared in ...


Street Stops And Broken Windows: Terry, Race And Disorder In New York City, Jeffrey Fagan, Garth Davies Jan 2001

Street Stops And Broken Windows: Terry, Race And Disorder In New York City, Jeffrey Fagan, Garth Davies

Faculty Scholarship

Patterns of "stop and frisk" activity by police across New York City neighborhoods reflect competing theories of aggressive policing. "Broken Windows" theory suggests that neighborhoods with greater concentrations of physical and social disorder should evidence higher stop and frisk activity, especially for "quality of life" crimes. However, while disorder theory informs quality of life policing strategies, observed patterns of stop and frisk activity suggest that neighborhood characteristics such as racial composition, poverty levels and the extent of social disorganization are stronger predictors of race- and crime-specific police stops than is the presence of "broken windows." Furthermore, stops of minority citizens ...


Sentencing Eddie, Gerard E. Lynch Jan 2001

Sentencing Eddie, Gerard E. Lynch

Faculty Scholarship

The mandatory minimum sentences attached to federal narcotics violations have come in for plenty of criticism. The United States Sentencing Commission in 1991 submitted a lengthy report critical of the mandatory minimum provisions. A political protest organization, Families Against Mandatory Minimums, has been formed, and has gotten some media attention. Newspaper columnists,professional commentators, judges, and academics, have criticized the statutes. Amidst the controversy over President Clinton's last-minute pardons of various offenders, his pardons of a number of marginal defendants sentenced to lengthy terms under these statutes have drawn little or no objection. Even Chief Justice Rehnquist, a strong ...