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Criminal justice

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Institution
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Full-Text Articles in Law

Sexual Abuse Of Female Inmates In Federal Prisons, Brenda Smith Dec 2022

Sexual Abuse Of Female Inmates In Federal Prisons, Brenda Smith

Congressional and Other Testimony

This Article discusses the modest aspirations of the Prison Rape Elimination Act (“PREA”) that passed unanimously in the United States Congress in 2003. The Article posits that PREA created opportunities for holding correctional authorities accountable by creating a baseline for safety and setting more transparent expectations for agencies’ practices for protecting prisoners from sexual abuse. Additionally, the Article posits that PREA enhanced the evolving standards of decency for the Eighth Amendment and articulated clear expectations of correctional authorities to provide sexual safety for people in custody.


Courts Without Court, Andrew Ferguson Oct 2022

Courts Without Court, Andrew Ferguson

Articles in Law Reviews & Other Academic Journals

What role does the physical courthouse play in the administration of criminal justice? This Article uses recent experiments with virtual courts to reimagine a future without criminal courthouses at the center. The key insight of this Article is to reveal how integral physical courts are to carceral control and how the rise of virtual courts helps to decenter power away from judges. This Article examines the effects of online courts on defendants, lawyers, judges, witnesses, victims, and courthouse officials and offers a framework for a better and less court-centered future. By studying post-COVID-19 disruptions around traditional conceptions of place, time, …


Negligence And Culpability: Reflections On Alexander And Ferzan, Mitchell N. Berman Oct 2022

Negligence And Culpability: Reflections On Alexander And Ferzan, Mitchell N. Berman

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

Philosophers of criminal punishment disagree about whether infliction of punishment for negligence can be morally justified. One contending view holds that it cannot be because punishment requires culpability and culpability requires, at a minimum, advertence to the facts that make one’s conduct wrongful. Larry Alexander and Kim Ferzan are prominent champions of this position. This essay challenges that view and their arguments for it. Invoking a conceptual distinction between an agent’s being blameworthy for an act and their deserving punishment (or suffering) for that act, it explains that an agent can be blameworthy for negligent conduct, and thus liable to …


War Crimes: History, Basic Concepts, And Structures, Richard J. Wilson Oct 2022

War Crimes: History, Basic Concepts, And Structures, Richard J. Wilson

Articles in Law Reviews & Other Academic Journals

On May 24, 20022, the Washington Post carried front-page news that a court in Ukraine had sentenced a 21-year-old Russian soldier, Vadim Shishimarin, to life imprisonment for the war crime of premeditated murder of a civilian, 62-year-old Oleksandr Shelipov. The session was the first war crimes trial in Ukraine since Russia's invasion three months earlier.


Examining Legal Financial Obligations In Washington State, Bryan Lewis Apr 2022

Examining Legal Financial Obligations In Washington State, Bryan Lewis

PPPA Paper Prize

After criminal offenders are convicted of a crime, they must return to the court where a judge will determine their sentence. Sentencing often includes jail time, but it always includes monetary penalties, or Legal Financial Obligations (LFOs). There are many reasons these penalties are given, from restitution for the victims of criminal offenses, to providing government revenue and funding the court, to punishment for the offender. However, these fines, and the interest rates that come with them, often leave offenders with an enormous amount of debt. There are a lot of interests at stake when it comes to LFO sentencing …


Delusions, Moral Incapacity, And The Case For Moral Wrongfulness, E. Lea Johnston Jan 2022

Delusions, Moral Incapacity, And The Case For Moral Wrongfulness, E. Lea Johnston

UF Law Faculty Publications

Responsibility is a legal—not medical—construct. However, science can be useful in exposing faulty assumptions underlying current doctrine or practice, illuminating changes in practice or evidentiary standards to better effectuate the law’s animating purpose, and even suggesting updates to legal standards to account for modern understandings of functionalities of concern. This Article uses the science of delusions to assess the law regarding, and practice of establishing, criminal irresponsibility for defendants with psychosis. Over the last two decades, researchers from the cognitive sciences have compiled strong evidence that a host of cognitive and emotional impairments contribute to the origin and maintenance of …


Criminal Law Exceptionalism, Benjamin Levin Jan 2022

Criminal Law Exceptionalism, Benjamin Levin

Publications

For over half a century, U.S. prison populations have ballooned and criminal codes have expanded. In recent years, a growing awareness of mass incarceration and the harms of criminal law across lines of race and class has led to a backlash of anti-carceral commentary and social movement energy. Academics and activists have adopted a critical posture, offering not only small-bore reforms, but full-fledged arguments for the abolition of prisons, police, and criminal legal institutions. Where criminal law was once embraced by commentators as a catchall solution to social problems, increasingly it is being rejected, or at least questioned. Instead of …


Victims’ Rights Revisited, Benjamin Levin Jan 2022

Victims’ Rights Revisited, Benjamin Levin

Publications

This Essay responds to Bennett Capers's article, "Against Prosecutors." I offer four critiques of Capers’s proposal to bring back private prosecutions: (A) that shifting power to victims still involves shifting power to the carceral state and away from defendants; (B) that defining the class of victims will pose numerous problems; C) that privatizing prosecution reinforces a troubling impulse to treat social problems at the individual level; and (D) broadly, that these critiques suggest that Capers has traded the pathologies of “public” law for the pathologies of “private” law. Further, I argue that the article reflects a new, left-leaning vision of …


Building Fierce Empathy, Binny Miller Jan 2022

Building Fierce Empathy, Binny Miller

Articles in Law Reviews & Other Academic Journals

In this Article I explore the process of building and sustaining empathy with clients in the context of representing juvenile lifers-- people convicted of serious crimes as children and sentenced to life or sentences that ensure that they spend most of their lives in prison--in a law school clinic. Before turning to my own lawyering experiences and those of my clinic students, I ground the discussion of empathy in the competing theories of Charles Ogletree and Abbe Smith about the value of empathic lawyering for public defenders. These theories, together with the contributions of other scholars, provide a springboard for …


“Cancel Culture” And Criminal Justice, Steven Arrigg Koh Jan 2022

“Cancel Culture” And Criminal Justice, Steven Arrigg Koh

Faculty Scholarship

This Article explores the relationship between two normative systems in modern society: “cancel culture” and criminal justice. It argues that cancel culture—a ubiquitous phenomenon in contemporary life—may rectify deficiencies of over- and under-enforcement in the U.S. criminal justice system. However, the downsides of cancel culture’s structure—imprecise factfinding, potentially disproportionate sanctions leading to collateral consequences, a “thin” conception of the wrongdoer as beyond rehabilitation, and a broader cultural anxiety that “chills” certain human conduct—reflect problematic U.S. punitive impulses that characterize our era of mass incarceration. This Article thus argues that social media reform proposals obscure a deeper necessity: transcendence of blame …


Free-Ing Criminal Justice, Bennett Capers Jan 2022

Free-Ing Criminal Justice, Bennett Capers

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Proportionality, Constraint, And Culpability, Mitchell N. Berman Sep 2021

Proportionality, Constraint, And Culpability, Mitchell N. Berman

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

Philosophers of criminal punishment widely agree that criminal punishment should be “proportional” to the “seriousness” of the offense. But this apparent consensus is only superficial, masking significant dissensus below the surface. Proposed proportionality principles differ on several distinct dimensions, including: (1) regarding which offense or offender properties determine offense “seriousness” and thus constitute a proportionality relatum; (2) regarding whether punishment is objectionably disproportionate only when excessively severe, or also when excessively lenient; and (3) regarding whether the principle can deliver absolute (“cardinal”) judgments, or only comparative (“ordinal”) ones. This essay proposes that these differences cannot be successfully adjudicated, and one …


Blameworthiness, Desert, And Luck, Mitchell N. Berman Sep 2021

Blameworthiness, Desert, And Luck, Mitchell N. Berman

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

Philosophers disagree about whether outcome luck can affect an agent’s “moral responsibility.” Focusing on responsibility’s “negative side,” some maintain, and others deny, that an action’s results bear constitutively on how “blameworthy” the actor is, and on how much blame or punishment they “deserve.” Crucially, both sides to the debate assume that an actor’s blameworthiness and negative desert are equally affected—or unaffected—by an action’s results. This article challenges that previously overlooked assumption, arguing that blameworthiness and desert are distinct moral notions that serve distinct normative functions: blameworthiness serves a liability function (removing a bar to otherwise impermissible treatments), whereas desert serves …


Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (Lvmpd) Budget Review, Fiscal Years 2018-2021, Olivia K. Cheche, Elia Del Carmen Solano-Patricio, Caitlin J. Saladino, William E. Brown Jr. Aug 2021

Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (Lvmpd) Budget Review, Fiscal Years 2018-2021, Olivia K. Cheche, Elia Del Carmen Solano-Patricio, Caitlin J. Saladino, William E. Brown Jr.

Criminal Justice

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department’s (LVMPD) annual budget increased every fiscal year (FY) from 2018 to 2021. Using data provided by the LVMPD’s final budget reports for FY 2018 to 2021, this Fact Sheet details LVMPD funding increases and summarizes budget expenditures by unit and area command.


Keynote Prosecutors And Race: Responsibility And Accountability, Angela J. Davis Jul 2021

Keynote Prosecutors And Race: Responsibility And Accountability, Angela J. Davis

Articles in Law Reviews & Other Academic Journals

Thank you so much, Madeline. I want to thank the Rutgers University Law Review and the Rutgers Center on Criminal Justice, Youth Rights, and Race for inviting me to participate in this very important symposium on Prosecutors, Power, and Racial Justice: Building an Anti-Racist Prosecutorial System. I want to give a special thanks to Professor Cohen and Gisselly, and all of the students who worked so hard to put the symposium together. It's such an important topic. I appreciate your interest, and [I] am particularly thankful to all of you [who] are here on this Friday afternoon to talk about …


After The Crime: Rewarding Offenders’ Positive Post-Offense Conduct, Paul H. Robinson, Muhammad Sarahne Jul 2021

After The Crime: Rewarding Offenders’ Positive Post-Offense Conduct, Paul H. Robinson, Muhammad Sarahne

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

While an offender’s conduct before and during the crime is the traditional focus of criminal law and sentencing rules, an examination of post-offense conduct can also be important in promoting criminal justice goals. After the crime, different offenders make different choices and have different experiences, and those differences can suggest appropriately different treatment by judges, correctional officials, probation and parole supervisors, and other decision-makers in the criminal justice system.

Positive post-offense conduct ought to be acknowledged and rewarded, not only to encourage it but also as a matter of fair and just treatment. This essay describes four kinds of positive …


Systemic Racism In The United States, Ari Emilia Short May 2021

Systemic Racism In The United States, Ari Emilia Short

Libraries

This bibliography contains an annotated selection of articles and studies related to systemic racism in the United States of America, covering 21st-century racial inequities in criminal justice, housing, employment, voting, education, and healthcare. Given the contentious nature of this topic - whether and to what extent systemic racism exists in the United States - sources were selected for relative neutrality, authority, and quality of methodologies used. This piece is intended to assist leaders, educators, activists, and any who wish to become better informed about this topic, develop empathy toward impacted groups, and prepare to address institutional concerns related to diversity, …


Are We Giving Them A Fair Chance? Racial Stereotypes And The Juvenile Justice System, Cali Bloem May 2021

Are We Giving Them A Fair Chance? Racial Stereotypes And The Juvenile Justice System, Cali Bloem

Honors Program Theses and Projects

Prior research indicates that there are racial disparities throughout the criminal justice system, including the juvenile justice system, and that decision-makers may use stereotypes when determining guilt and deciding on sentences for juveniles. We used a mock juror study design in which participants were randomly assigned to read one of four trial summaries of an assault committed by either a White juvenile or Latinx juvenile, with the victim being a White juvenile or Latinx juvenile. The participants were asked to provide a verdict and sentencing decision and explain why they chose the sentence that they did. They were also tasked …


Racial Disparities Inherent In America's Fragmented Parole System, Olinda Moyd Apr 2021

Racial Disparities Inherent In America's Fragmented Parole System, Olinda Moyd

Articles in Law Reviews & Other Academic Journals

This global health crisis has proven to be an equal opportunity discloser, in that it has spotlighted the layers of inequities and racial disparities so engrained in America’s structural systems. Nowhere else is this more evident than in our criminal legal system, where justice is often austere for African Americans. The ghastly statistics of the number of people confined in jails and prisons do not fully capture the scope and extensive reach of those swept up in our legal system. It is estimated that about 4-5 million people are on community supervision, to include probation and parole, which far outnumber …


Prison Theocracy, Athena Gainey Jan 2021

Prison Theocracy, Athena Gainey

Charles Rice Post-Graduate Research Fellowship

This research hopes to understand justice by inquiring about control over definitions of justice. Further questions also include if and how justice works in America’ criminal justice system; who does it define as inclusive/exclusive to society; and how does the system and those who run it choose to protect inclusive members of society? Examples of the Prison Industrial Complex- such as mass incarceration and police brutality- exist as proof that American facilities of law & order lack justice in equity for all its citizen. Both religious and non-religious based grassroots organizations have developed instrumental changes that push to reform and …


Erasing Evidence Of Historic Injustice: The Cannabis Criminal Records Expungement Paradox, Julie E. Steiner Jan 2021

Erasing Evidence Of Historic Injustice: The Cannabis Criminal Records Expungement Paradox, Julie E. Steiner

Faculty Scholarship

Cannabis prohibition and its subsequent enforcement have yielded an epic societal tragedy. The decision to criminalize cannabis was a paradigm-shifting moment in legal history because it converted lawful medicinal or intoxicant seeking conduct into criminal activity, inviting government intrusion into matters previously self-controlled.

Scholars increasingly recognize that prohibition was built upon a decades-long, false, media-driven narrative that “marijuana” was one of society’s worst menacing enemies. Using overtly racist propaganda, the narrative successfully captured the audience, fomenting public anxiety and unfairly demonizing cannabis and its users. This misinformation campaign ultimately led to its current status as prohibited under the federal Controlled …


Criminalization And Normalization: Some Thoughts About Offenders With Serious Mental Illness, Richard C. Boldt Jan 2021

Criminalization And Normalization: Some Thoughts About Offenders With Serious Mental Illness, Richard C. Boldt

Faculty Scholarship

Response to Professor E. Lea Johnston, Reconceptualizing Criminal Justice Reform for Offenders with Serious Mental Illness

Abstract

While Professor Johnston is persuasive that clinical factors such as diagnosis and treatment history are not, in most cases, predictive by themselves of criminal behavior, her concession that those clinical factors are associated with a constellation of risks and needs that are predictive of criminal system involvement complicates her efforts to maintain a clear boundary between the criminalization theory and the normalization thesis. Indeed, Professor Johnston’s article contains a brief section in which she identifies “possible justifications” for the specialized programs that are …


Civil Vs. Criminal Legal Aid, Shaun Ossei-Owusu Jan 2021

Civil Vs. Criminal Legal Aid, Shaun Ossei-Owusu

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

The past few decades have highlighted the insidious effects of poverty, particularly for poor people who lack access to legal representation. Accordingly, there have been longstanding calls for “Civil Gideon,” which refers to a right to counsel in civil cases that would address issues tied to housing, public benefits, family issues, and various areas of law that poor people are often disadvantaged by due to their lack of attorneys. This civil right to counsel would complement the analogous criminal right that has been constitutionalized. Notwithstanding the persuasive arguments made for and against Civil Gideon, it is less clear …


From The Legal Literature: Is Progressive Prosecution Possible?, Francesca Laguardia Jan 2021

From The Legal Literature: Is Progressive Prosecution Possible?, Francesca Laguardia

Department of Justice Studies Faculty Scholarship and Creative Works

No abstract provided.


Women’S Votes, Women’S Voices, And The Limits Of Criminal Justice Reform, 1911–1950, Carolyn B. Ramsey Jan 2021

Women’S Votes, Women’S Voices, And The Limits Of Criminal Justice Reform, 1911–1950, Carolyn B. Ramsey

Publications

Deriving its vigor from the work of grassroots organizations at the state and local levels, the League of Women Voters (LWV) sought, in the first half of the twentieth century, to provide newly enfranchised women with a political education to strengthen their voice in public affairs. Local branches like the San Francisco Center learned from experience—through practical involvement in a variety of social welfare and criminal justice initiatives. This Article, written for a symposium commemorating the centennial of the Nineteenth Amendment, assesses the role of LWV leaders in California and especially San Francisco in reforming three aspects of the criminal …


Decarceration And Default Mental States, Benjamin Levin Jan 2021

Decarceration And Default Mental States, Benjamin Levin

Publications

This Essay, presented at “Guilty Minds: A Virtual Conference on Mens Rea and Criminal Justice Reform” at ASU’s Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, examines the politics of federal mens rea reform legislation. I argue that current mens rea policy debates reflect an overly narrow vision of criminal justice reform. Therefore, I suggest an alternative frame through which to view mens rea reform efforts—a frame that resonates with radical structural critiques that have gained ground among activists and academics.

Common arguments for and against mens rea reform reflect a belief that the problem with the criminal system is one of …


Educating Antiracist Lawyers: The Race And The Equal Protection Of The Laws Program At Dickinson Law, Dermot M. Groome Jan 2021

Educating Antiracist Lawyers: The Race And The Equal Protection Of The Laws Program At Dickinson Law, Dermot M. Groome

Faculty Scholarly Works

The year 2020 has forced us, as a nation, to recognize painful realities about systemic racism in our country and our legal system. The fallacies in our founding documents and the vestiges of our slave past are so woven into our national culture that they became hard to see except for those who suffered their daily indignities, hardships, and fears. As legal educators, we must face the role we have played in helping build the machinery of structural racism by supplying generation after generation of those who maintain that machinery and prosper within it. In this critical moment of our …


Wage Theft Criminalization, Benjamin Levin Jan 2021

Wage Theft Criminalization, Benjamin Levin

Publications

Over the past decade, workers’ rights activists and legal scholars have embraced the language of “wage theft” in describing the abuses of the contemporary workplace. The phrase invokes a certain moral clarity: theft is wrong. The phrase is not merely a rhetorical flourish. Increasingly, it has a specific content for activists, politicians, advocates, and academics: wage theft speaks the language of criminal law, and wage theft is a crime that should be punished. Harshly. Self-proclaimed “progressive prosecutors” have made wage theft cases a priority, and left-leaning politicians in the United States and abroad have begun to propose more criminal statutes …


"Defund The (School) Police"?: Bringing Data To Key School-To-Prison Pipeline Claims, Michael Heise, Jason P. Nance Jan 2021

"Defund The (School) Police"?: Bringing Data To Key School-To-Prison Pipeline Claims, Michael Heise, Jason P. Nance

UF Law Faculty Publications

Nationwide calls to “Defund the Police,” largely attributable to the resurgent Black Lives Matter demonstrations, have motivated derivative calls for public school districts to consider “defunding” (or modifying) school resource officer (“SRO/police”) programs. To be sure, a school’s SRO/police presence—and the size of that presence—may influence the school’s student discipline reporting policies and practices. How schools report student discipline and whether it involves referrals to law enforcement agencies matter, particularly as they may fuel a growing “school-to-prison pipeline.” The school-to-prison pipeline research literature features two general claims that frame debates about changes in how public schools approach student discipline and …


Ai In Adjudication And Administration, Cary Coglianese, Lavi M. Ben Dor Jan 2021

Ai In Adjudication And Administration, Cary Coglianese, Lavi M. Ben Dor

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Carey Law

The use of artificial intelligence has expanded rapidly in recent years across many aspects of the economy. For federal, state, and local governments in the United States, interest in artificial intelligence has manifested in the use of a series of digital tools, including the occasional deployment of machine learning, to aid in the performance of a variety of governmental functions. In this paper, we canvas the current uses of such digital tools and machine-learning technologies by the judiciary and administrative agencies in the United States. Although we have yet to see fully automated decision-making find its way into either adjudication …