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Full-Text Articles in Law

The Problem With Assumptions: Revisiting “The Dark Figure Of Sexual Recidivism”, Tamara Rice Lave, Jj Prescott, Grady Bridges Jun 2021

The Problem With Assumptions: Revisiting “The Dark Figure Of Sexual Recidivism”, Tamara Rice Lave, Jj Prescott, Grady Bridges

Articles

What is the actual rate of sexual recidivism given the well‐ known fact that many crimes go unreported? This is a difficult and important problem, and in “The dark figure of sexual recidivism,” Nicholas Scurich and Richard S. John (2019) attempt to make progress on it by “estimat[ing] actual recidivism rates . . . given observed rates of reoffending” (p. 171). In this article, we show that the math in their probabilistic model is flawed, but more importantly, we demonstrate that their conclusions follow ineluctably from their empirical assumptions and the unrepresentative empirical research they cite to benchmark their calculations. Scurich and ...


The Deliberate Indifference Standard: A Broken Promise To Protect And Serve The Mentally Ill, Katherine R. Carroll Jan 2021

The Deliberate Indifference Standard: A Broken Promise To Protect And Serve The Mentally Ill, Katherine R. Carroll

Touro Law Review

No abstract provided.


The Long Shortlist: Women Considered For The Supreme Court, Michael Conklin Jan 2021

The Long Shortlist: Women Considered For The Supreme Court, Michael Conklin

Journal of Race, Gender, and Ethnicity

No abstract provided.


Power And Statistical Significance In Securities Fraud Litigation, Jill E. Fisch, Jonah B. Gelbach Jan 2021

Power And Statistical Significance In Securities Fraud Litigation, Jill E. Fisch, Jonah B. Gelbach

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Event studies, a half-century-old approach to measuring the effect of events on stock prices, are now ubiquitous in securities fraud litigation. In determining whether the event study demonstrates a price effect, expert witnesses typically base their conclusion on whether the results are statistically significant at the 95% confidence level, a threshold that is drawn from the academic literature. As a positive matter, this represents a disconnect with legal standards of proof. As a normative matter, it may reduce enforcement of fraud claims because litigation event studies typically involve quite low statistical power even for large-scale frauds.

This paper, written for ...


Numbers, Patrick Barry Nov 2020

Numbers, Patrick Barry

Articles

Numbers can be numbing. Depend too much on them to make your case, pitch your product, or tell your story, and you risk losing your audience. This essay offers a way to way to use numbers—both large and small—in a manner that is at once more compelling and more concrete.


Equal Protection Under Algorithms: A New Statistical And Legal Framework, Crystal S. Yang, Will Dobbie Nov 2020

Equal Protection Under Algorithms: A New Statistical And Legal Framework, Crystal S. Yang, Will Dobbie

Michigan Law Review

In this Article, we provide a new statistical and legal framework to understand the legality and fairness of predictive algorithms under the Equal Protection Clause. We begin by reviewing the main legal concerns regarding the use of protected characteristics such as race and the correlates of protected characteristics such as criminal history. The use of race and nonrace correlates in predictive algorithms generates direct and proxy effects of race, respectively, that can lead to racial disparities that many view as unwarranted and discriminatory. These effects have led to the mainstream legal consensus that the use of race and nonrace correlates ...


Law Library Blog (October 2020): Legal Beagle's Blog Archive, Roger Williams University School Of Law Oct 2020

Law Library Blog (October 2020): Legal Beagle's Blog Archive, Roger Williams University School Of Law

Law Library Newsletters/Blog

No abstract provided.


Criminal Justice Bias: Fact Or Fiction, Hiba Mobarak Feb 2020

Criminal Justice Bias: Fact Or Fiction, Hiba Mobarak

Quest

Objective Analysis

Research in progress for CRIJ 1301: Introduction to Criminal Justice

Faculty Mentor: Stefanie LeMaire

The following paper represents work produced by a student in an Introduction to Criminal Justice course at Collin College. The paper is an objective analysis of prominent research regarding potential police biases and how officers’ decisions may be influenced by a suspect’s race. The topic of racial bias within policing is quite controversial, as evidenced by the community protests, media coverage, and destruction that has ensued after officer-involved shootings. This assignment asks students to objectively review scholarly research on police bias and constructively ...


Science And The Eighth Amendment, Meghan J. Ryan Jan 2020

Science And The Eighth Amendment, Meghan J. Ryan

Faculty Journal Articles and Book Chapters

As time hurtles forward, new science constantly emerges, and many scientific fields can shed light on whether a punishment is unconstitutionally cruel and unusual, or even on whether bail or fines are unconstitutionally excessive under the Eighth Amendment. In fact, in recent years, science has played an increasingly important role in the Court’s Eighth Amendment jurisprudence. From the development of an offender’s brain, to the composition of lethal injection drugs, even to measurements of pain, knowledge of various scientific fields is becoming central to understanding whether a punishment is unconstitutionally cruel and unusual. There are a number of ...


Finding Data And Statistics On Judges, Leslie A. Street Sep 2019

Finding Data And Statistics On Judges, Leslie A. Street

Leslie A. Street

No abstract provided.


The Effectiveness Of Measures To Increase Appellate Court Efficiency And Decision Output, Thomas B. Marvell, Carlisle E. Moody Sep 2019

The Effectiveness Of Measures To Increase Appellate Court Efficiency And Decision Output, Thomas B. Marvell, Carlisle E. Moody

Carlisle Moody

This Article will examine the effectiveness of measures commonly employed to increase appellate court productivity. Part I of the Article sets forth some common design problems and explains how the research technique employed in the present study avoids these problems by using a multiple time-series research design. Part II applies this design to state court data. Part II also describes the dependent variable, the number of appeals decided per judge, used in the regression analysis. Part III discusses the results of that analysis-the impact of each change listed above on judicial productivity. The Article, although not advocating the adoption of ...


Alj Support Systems: Staff Attorneys And Decision Writers, Russell L. Weaver Jun 2019

Alj Support Systems: Staff Attorneys And Decision Writers, Russell L. Weaver

Russell L. Weaver

No abstract provided.


Title 2.0: Discrimination Law In A Data-Driven Society, Bryan Casey Apr 2019

Title 2.0: Discrimination Law In A Data-Driven Society, Bryan Casey

Journal of Law and Mobility

More than a quarter century after civil rights activists pioneered America’s first ridesharing network, the connections between transportation, innovation, and discrimination are again on full display. Industry leaders such as Uber, Amazon, and Waze have garnered widespread acclaim for successfully combatting stubbornly persistent barriers to transportation. But alongside this well-deserved praise has come a new set of concerns. Indeed, a growing number of studies have uncovered troubling racial disparities in wait times, ride cancellation rates, and service availability in companies including Uber, Lyft, Task Rabbit, Grubhub, and Amazon Delivery.

Surveying the methodologies employed by these studies reveals a subtle ...


Law Library Blog (January 2019): Legal Beagle's Blog Archive, Roger Williams University School Of Law Jan 2019

Law Library Blog (January 2019): Legal Beagle's Blog Archive, Roger Williams University School Of Law

Law Library Newsletters/Blog

No abstract provided.


Policing, Danger Narratives, And Routine Traffic Stops, Jordan Blair Woods Jan 2019

Policing, Danger Narratives, And Routine Traffic Stops, Jordan Blair Woods

Michigan Law Review

This Article presents findings from the largest and most comprehensive study to date on violence against the police during traffic stops. Every year, police officers conduct tens of millions of traffic stops. Many of these stops are entirely unremarkable—so much so that they may be fairly described as routine. Nonetheless, the narrative that routine traffic stops are fraught with grave and unpredictable danger to the police permeates police training and animates Fourth Amendment doctrine. This Article challenges this dominant danger narrative and its centrality within key institutions that regulate the police.

The presented study is the first to offer ...


Lawyer As Soothsayer: Exploring The Important Role Of Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck Dec 2018

Lawyer As Soothsayer: Exploring The Important Role Of Outcome Prediction In The Practice Of Law, Mark K. Osbeck

Articles

Outcome prediction has always been an important part of practicing law. Clients rely heavily on their attorneys to provide accurate assessments of the potential legal consequences they face when making important decisions (such as whether to accept a plea bargain, or risk a conviction on a much more serious offense at trial). And yet, notwithstanding its enormous importance to the practice of law (and notwithstanding the handsome legal fees it commands), outcome prediction in the law remains a very imprecise endeavor. The reason for this inaccuracy is that the three principal tools lawyers have traditionally relied on to facilitate outcome ...


How To Create A Stunning Video Orientation By Hand, Rachel S. Evans Dec 2018

How To Create A Stunning Video Orientation By Hand, Rachel S. Evans

Articles, Chapters and Online Publications

This article describes the multi-faceted approach UGA Law Library took with their fall 2018 first year student orientation. It describes the process of the creating a virtual tour experience, pairing it with a hybrid face-to-face event, and assessing the impact of all aspects of the orientation. The creation of the video itself involved a multi-media approach using a combination of visual arts and technology to animate a product that has a longer expiration than traditional video or in-person library orientations offer.


Haack On Legal Proof, Richard Wright Nov 2018

Haack On Legal Proof, Richard Wright

All Faculty Scholarship

In this paper I discuss Susan Haack’s illuminating discussion and constructive critique of the current confusion regarding the standards of proof employed in the law, focusing especially on mathematical probability rather than warranted belief interpretations of those standards. At the end, I question Haack’s claim that statistical evidence is relevant not only for establishing the existence of a causal process but also, although usually insufficient by itself, for proving actual causation in a specific case.


Controlling The Jury-Teaching Function, Richard D. Friedman Apr 2018

Controlling The Jury-Teaching Function, Richard D. Friedman

Articles

When evidence with a scientific basis is offered, two fundamental questions arise. First, should it be admitted? Second, if so, how should it be assessed? There are numerous participants who might play a role in deciding these questions—the jury (on the second question only), the parties (through counsel), expert witnesses on each side, the trial court, the forces controlling the judicial system (which include, but are not limited to, the appellate courts), and the scientific establishment. In this Article, I will suggest that together, the last two—the forces controlling the judicial system and the scientific establishment—have a ...


Pretrial Detention And Bail, Megan T. Stevenson, Sandra G. Mayson Jan 2018

Pretrial Detention And Bail, Megan T. Stevenson, Sandra G. Mayson

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Our current pretrial system imposes high costs on both the people who are detained pretrial and the taxpayers who foot the bill. These costs have prompted a surge of bail reform around the country. Reformers seek to reduce pretrial detention rates, as well as racial and socioeconomic disparities in the pretrial system, while simultaneously improving appearance rates and reducing pretrial crime. The current state of pretrial practice suggests that there is ample room for improvement. Bail hearings are often cursory, taking little time to evaluate a defendant’s risks, needs, or ability to pay. Money-bail practices lead to high rates ...


Allstar Benchmarking: How Collaborating On Collecting And Sharing Data Is A Win-Win, Christine I. Dulac Nov 2017

Allstar Benchmarking: How Collaborating On Collecting And Sharing Data Is A Win-Win, Christine I. Dulac

Faculty Publications

We all know it’s hard to tell a library’s story to its stakeholders. Academic law libraries are expensive enterprises, and it’s challenging to capture the complete picture of the value that their resources, activities, and services provide. Consider as well the ever-increasing demands to augment services, while at the same time having to justify the need for new services and prove their cost-effectiveness In this environment, decision-makers need a clear understanding of what the library wants to accomplish, how it intends to meet its goals, and how it will measure success. What are the most important operations ...


Punishing On A Curve, Adi Leibovitch Aug 2017

Punishing On A Curve, Adi Leibovitch

Northwestern University Law Review

Does the punishment of one defendant depend on how she fares in comparison to the other defendants on the judge’s docket? This Article demonstrates that the troubling answer is yes. Judges sentence a given offense more harshly when their caseloads contain relatively milder offenses and more leniently when their caseloads contain more serious crimes. I call this phenomenon “punishing on a curve.”

Consequently, this Article shows how such relative sentencing patterns put into question the prevailing practice of establishing specialized courts and courts of limited jurisdiction. Because judges punish on a curve, a court’s jurisdictional scope systematically shapes ...


Constitutionalism And Democracy Dataset, Version 1.0, Todd A. Eisenstadt, Carl Levan, Tofigh Maboudi May 2017

Constitutionalism And Democracy Dataset, Version 1.0, Todd A. Eisenstadt, Carl Levan, Tofigh Maboudi

Political Science: Faculty Publications and Other Works

The main objective of the CDD is to quantify the process of constitution-making since 1974. This is the first public release of any data on the process of constitution-making. This release includes data on 144 national constitutions promulgated in 119 countries from 1974 to 2014. The unit of analysis in the data is national constitutions. The data in this release includes only “new” constitutions and does not include suspended, re-installed, amended, or interim constitutions. In this release, only countries with a population larger than 500,000 are included. The authors intend to update the data by including all countries, expanding ...


Digging Into The Foundations Of Evidence Law, David H. Kaye Apr 2017

Digging Into The Foundations Of Evidence Law, David H. Kaye

Michigan Law Review

Review of The Psychological Foundations of Evidence Law by Michael J. Saks and Barbara A. Spellman.


Bail Reform: New Directions For Pretrial Detention And Release, Megan Stevenson, Sandra G. Mayson Mar 2017

Bail Reform: New Directions For Pretrial Detention And Release, Megan Stevenson, Sandra G. Mayson

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Our current pretrial system imposes high costs on both the people who are detained pretrial and the taxpayers who foot the bill. These costs have prompted a surge of bail reform around the country. Reformers seek to reduce pretrial detention rates, as well as racial and socioeconomic disparities in the pretrial system, while simultaneously improving appearance rates and reducing pretrial crime. The current state of pretrial practice suggests that there is ample room for improvement. Bail hearings are often cursory, with no defense counsel present. Money-bail practices lead to high rates of detention even among misdemeanor defendants and those who ...


Race And Wrongful Convictions In The United States, Samuel R. Gross, Maurice Possley, Klara Stephens Mar 2017

Race And Wrongful Convictions In The United States, Samuel R. Gross, Maurice Possley, Klara Stephens

Other Publications

African Americans are only 13% of the American population but a majority of innocent defendants wrongfully convicted of crimes and later exonerated. They constitute 47% of the 1,900 exonerations listed in the National Registry of Exonerations (as of October 2016), and the great majority of more than 1,800 additional innocent defendants who were framed and convicted of crimes in 15 large-scale police scandals and later cleared in “group exonerations.” We see this racial disparity for all major crime categories, but we examine it in this report in the context of the three types of crime that produce the ...


Evidence Of Child Abuse: Inferring The Causes Of Effects, Stephen E. Fienberg Mar 2017

Evidence Of Child Abuse: Inferring The Causes Of Effects, Stephen E. Fienberg

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

A statistician's take on evidence of child abuse.


Problems With Using Statistics To Justify Institutional Policies, Justin Shin Jan 2017

Problems With Using Statistics To Justify Institutional Policies, Justin Shin

Senior Projects Spring 2017

It is becoming increasingly common for institutions to use statistics to inform policy decisions. We should be prepared to ask ourselves what regulatory principles should be imposed on institutions that seek to justify certain policies through deference to a statistical analysis. This paper will examine the difficulties that come with using statistics to justify actions, and argue that certain standards of transparency and verifiability should be expected from any institution that seeks to involve a statistical analysis in the formation of policies. I will first use Market Share Liability, an established use of statistics, to draw out what responsibilities an ...


Knowing Defense, Janet Moore, Andrew L.B. Davies Jan 2017

Knowing Defense, Janet Moore, Andrew L.B. Davies

Faculty Articles and Other Publications

The field of empirical research on public defense is in an early stage of development. Yet the field is also diverse, as a growing community of researchers applies training in disciplines ranging from law and criminology to economics and social psychology. These facts invite reflection on baseline questions about the field that may inform future work. For example, what factors shape our research agendas? What data, methods, and theories are in play? Do these new research agendas align with the research priorities of public defenders and the communities they serve? Should they do so? To begin exploring such questions, this ...


What We Think, What We Know And What We Think We Know About False Convictions, Samuel Gross Jan 2017

What We Think, What We Know And What We Think We Know About False Convictions, Samuel Gross

Articles

False convictions are notoriously difficult to study because they can neither be observed when they occur nor identified after the fact by any plausible research strategy. Our best shot is to collect data on those that come to light in legal proceedings that result in the exoneration of the convicted defendants. In May 2012, the National Registry of Exonerations released its first report, covering 873 exonerations from January 1989 through February 2012. By October 15, 2016, we had added 1,027 cases: 599 exonerations since March 1, 2012, and 428 that had already happened when we issued our initial report ...