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Full-Text Articles in Law

Judges Playing Jury: Constitutional Conflicts In Deciding Fair Use On Summary Judgment, Ned Snow Dec 2010

Judges Playing Jury: Constitutional Conflicts In Deciding Fair Use On Summary Judgment, Ned Snow

Faculty Publications

Issues of fair use in copyright cases are usually decided at summary judgment. But it was not always so. For well over a century, juries routinely decided these issues. The law recognized that fair use issues were highly subjective and thereby inherently factual — unfit for summary disposition by a judge. Today, however, all this has been forgotten. Judges are characterizing factual issues as purely legal so that fair use may be decided at summary judgment. Even while judges acknowledge that reasonable minds may disagree on these issues, they characterize the issues as legal, preventing them from ever reaching a …


Criminal Law And Procedure, Virginia B. Theisen, Stephen R. Mccullough Nov 2010

Criminal Law And Procedure, Virginia B. Theisen, Stephen R. Mccullough

University of Richmond Law Review

The authors have endeavored to select from the many cases and bills those that have the most significant practical impact on the daily practice of criminal law in the Commonwealth. Due to space constraints, the authors have stayed away from discussing settled principles, with a focus on the "take away" for a particular case.


Seeing Is Believing; Or Is It? An Emperical Study Of Computer Simulations As Evidence., Robert B. Bennett, Jordan H. Leibman, Richard Fetter Sep 2010

Seeing Is Believing; Or Is It? An Emperical Study Of Computer Simulations As Evidence., Robert B. Bennett, Jordan H. Leibman, Richard Fetter

Robert B. Bennett

Relying on the old adage, "seeing is believing," we conclude that the jury may give undue weight to an animated reconstruction of the accident .... It would be an inordinately difficult task for the plaintiff to counter, by cross-examination or otherwise, the impression that a computerized depiction of the accident is necessarily more accurate than an oral description of how the accident occurred. Because the expert's conclusion would be graphically depicted in a moving and animated form, the viewing of the computer simulation might more readily lead the jury to accept the data and premises underlying the defendant's expert's opinion... …


Jurors In The Digital Age, Thaddeus Hoffmeister Aug 2010

Jurors In The Digital Age, Thaddeus Hoffmeister

Thaddeus Hoffmeister

ABSTRACT: Improper use of new technology by jurors inside and outside the courtroom has become so pervasive that commentators have coined new phrases to describe it: “Google Mistrials,” the “Twitter Effect,” and “Internet-Tainted Jurors.” Yet, despite the attention garnered, few legal scholars, to date, have examined this area in-depth. The articles addressing this topic primarily focus on the benefits of technology and how to harness it to aid in juror comprehension. This dearth of legal scholarship may be due in large part to the fact that the Digital Age is fairly new and still evolving and juror misconduct is historically …


Restoring The Founders’ Ideal Of The Independent Jury In Criminal Cases, Thomas Regnier Aug 2010

Restoring The Founders’ Ideal Of The Independent Jury In Criminal Cases, Thomas Regnier

Thomas Regnier

The framers of the American government strongly believed in a jury that could “decide both law and fact” in criminal cases. This belief was based on two insights that were better understood in the founding era than they are today: (1) When the government is a party to a judicial proceeding, as in a criminal case, it is a conflict of interest for the judge, a government employee, to be the final arbiter of the law. The judge was to advise the jury on the law, but the jury was not bound by his advice. This insight goes back to …


The Plea Jury, Laura I. Appleman Jul 2010

The Plea Jury, Laura I. Appleman

Indiana Law Journal

This Article argues that it is time to reform the much-criticized plea-bargaining process by restoring the Sixth Amendment jury trial right back to criminal adjudication. My proposal would incorporate the local community into the guilty-plea procedure through the use of a plea jury, thus solving a multitude of problems within the criminal justice system. In a plea jury, a lay panel of citizens would listen to the defendant's allocution and determine the acceptability of the plea and sentence, reinvigorating the community's right to determine punishment for offenders. My goal is to return the Sixth Amendment community-jury right to its proper …


Making Stuff Up, Richard H. Underwood Jul 2010

Making Stuff Up, Richard H. Underwood

Law Faculty Scholarly Articles

Beginning with an article in this Journal almost thirty years ago, Professor Underwood continues to research and write about legal ethics and litigation. In this Commentary, he offers a witty look at several cases where, in his opinion, the judge allowed improper arguments to the jury.


The Tennessee Death Penalty: Prosecutors, Juries And The Impact Of Race, Kristin Amber Wagers May 2010

The Tennessee Death Penalty: Prosecutors, Juries And The Impact Of Race, Kristin Amber Wagers

Doctoral Dissertations

The impact of race within the American criminal justice system has seen long-term debate and has been studied by numerous social scientists. This dissertation examines the criminal justice system by analyzing data created by the Tennessee courts to determine whether race impacts the administration of Tennessee’s death penalty. This dissertation examines whether race impacts the overall administration of Tennessee’s death penalty, a Tennessee prosecutor’s decision to seek death, and a Tennessee jury’s decision to impose death. The impact of race at each stage is analyzed by logistic regression to isolate the defendant’s race, the victim’s race, and the racial interaction …


Debacle: How The Supreme Court Has Mangled American Sentencing Law And How It Might Yet Be Mended, Frank O. Bowman Iii Jan 2010

Debacle: How The Supreme Court Has Mangled American Sentencing Law And How It Might Yet Be Mended, Frank O. Bowman Iii

Faculty Publications

This Article argues that the line of Supreme Court Sixth Amendment jury right cases that began with McMillan v. Pennsylvania in 1986, crescendoed in Blakely v. Washington and United States v. Booker in 2004-2005, and continued in 2009 in cases such as Oregon v. Ice, has been a colossal judicial failure. First, the Court has failed to provide a logically coherent, constitutionally based answer to the fundamental question of what limits the Constitution places on the roles played by the institutional actors in the criminal justice system. It failed to recognize that defining, adjudicating and punishing crimes implicates both the …


Korean Jury Trial: Has The New System Brought About Changes?, Jae-Hyup Lee Jan 2010

Korean Jury Trial: Has The New System Brought About Changes?, Jae-Hyup Lee

Jae-Hyup Lee

This paper describes the major driving forces behind the introduction of the jury system in Korea and general expectations the new system was meant to bring about. It seeks to determine whether the expected changes are actually occurring, what kinds of problems have arisen, and what implications can be drawn for the future based on the first two years of jury trial operations. Data for this study was drawn from statistics collected by the National Court Administration and the author’s own observations of the trials, as well as interviews with the presiding judges of the jury trials.


Judge Or Jury? Determining Deception Or Misrepresentation Under The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Christian Stueben Jan 2010

Judge Or Jury? Determining Deception Or Misrepresentation Under The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Christian Stueben

Fordham Law Review

This Note explores the conflict among the federal circuit courts as to whether a judge or jury should decide if the language contained in a collection letter is false, misleading, or deceptive to the least sophisticated consumer under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). Some circuits, such as the Second and Ninth Circuits, hold that this issue is a question of law, appropriate for the judge to decide. In contrast, the Seventh Circuit finds this to be a question of fact, and requires the plaintiff to submit extrinsic evidence in the form of professional surveys in order to reach …


Empaneling The Peers Of Polluters: Obtaining A Jury Trial Under The Opa And Cercla As Explained In United States V. Viking Resources, Inc., Addison J. Schreck Jan 2010

Empaneling The Peers Of Polluters: Obtaining A Jury Trial Under The Opa And Cercla As Explained In United States V. Viking Resources, Inc., Addison J. Schreck

Kentucky Journal of Equine, Agriculture, & Natural Resources Law

No abstract provided.


Originalism And Summary Judgment, Brian T. Fitzpatrick Jan 2010

Originalism And Summary Judgment, Brian T. Fitzpatrick

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

Over the last several years, the Supreme Court has revolutionized modern criminal procedure by invoking the Sixth Amendment right to a jury trial to strike down several sentencing innovations. This revolution has been led by members of the Supreme Court who follow an "originalist" method of constitutional interpretation. Recent work by the legal historian Suja Thomas has raised the question whether a similar "originalist" revolution may be on the horizon in civil cases governed by the Seventh Amendment’s right to a jury trial. In particular, Professor Thomas has argued that the summary judgment device is unconstitutional because it permits judges …


Rough Justice, Alexandra Lahav Dec 2009

Rough Justice, Alexandra Lahav

Alexandra D. Lahav

This Essay offers a new justification for rough justice. Rough justice, as I use the term here, is the attempt to resolve large numbers of cases by using statistical methods to give plaintiffs a justifiable amount of recovery. It replaces the trial, which most consider the ideal process for assigning value to cases. Ordinarily rough justice is justified on utilitarian grounds. But rough justice is not only efficient, it is also fair. In fact, even though individual litigation is often held out as the sine qua non of process, rough justice does a better job at obtaining fair results for …


Balancing The Rights Of The Public With The Jurors' Right To Privacy During The Jury Selection Process, Stephen A. Gerst Dec 2009

Balancing The Rights Of The Public With The Jurors' Right To Privacy During The Jury Selection Process, Stephen A. Gerst

Stephen A Gerst

It is rare for a trial judge hearing a criminal case to receive a motion to intervene filed by third parties not named in the proceedings. In the jury selection process of cases involving high profile defendants, however, the public - including the press - has a heightened interest in the proceedings. At the same time, the trial judge may have a heightened interest in the protection of juror privacy. This article discusses the issue of when and under what circumstances a trial court may close proceedings to the public during the jury selection process and seal the written responses …