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Criminal Law I WestlawNext - Pesca
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Criminal Law I WestlawNext - Pesca


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  • 1. WESTLAWNEXT Criminal Law I – Pesca
  • 2. This is what you see when you first open WestlawNext! The search box is designed like Google for simplicity. 24/7 assistance
  • 3. Legal Issue (your Westlaw question): • Do citizens have a 4th Amendment right to privacy in their trash left outside for pick-up or do police need a search warrant?
  • 4. Note that when you select a specific court to search, e.g., the U.S. Supreme Court, or N.Y. Court of Appeals – any individual court search – you first get the top 10 most recent cases that court has decided.
  • 5. Here we are simply typing in our legal issue in natural language.
  • 6. Very helpful for you for interpreting case law!
  • 8. Now what? From your list of cases, your challenge now is to find a key case that most closely addresses your legal issue. For many of you, sorting by “Date” will help because Professor Pesca has designed your legal issue to lead to a recent case.
  • 9. Let‟s say we decide this is the case we want.
  • 10. FLAGS???
  • 11. No flag = good law so far - Yellow flag = caution – Red flag = no longer good law (has been overruled, overturned) Click on the flag for specific negative history.
  • 12. Just because there is no flag… • … does not mean this is the best case! • A case like Roe v. Wade – (Supreme Court of the United States January 22, 1973 - 410 U.S. 113) • a very famous U.S. Supreme Court case in the 1970s, has a yellow flag because some courts have not agreed with certain aspects of the Court‟s ruling – but this case has been cited over 22,000 times! • If later cases have „cited‟ to (referred to) a case thousands of times, even if there is some negative treatment, this case is still good law, and very, very important! • Bottom line: don‟t be afraid of cases with yellow flags!
  • 13. HEADNOTES…. …explained
  • 14. 1. A court issues an opinion in a case. 2. A copy of the case is obtained by West, where attorney-editors read the cases and pick out the points of law or legal issues in the case. 3. These legal issues or points of law are summarized in a “headnote” and assigned a topic and key number.
  • 15. LET‟S DO ANOTHER EXAMPLE. Case Law Searching
  • 16. Legal Issue: • If a K9 is used to walk by an automobile the police suspect might have drugs in it, is that a search without a warrant in the State of New York?
  • 17. By selecting All New York State Cases, we ensure that we are getting cases from NY trial courts, appellate courts and most importantly, NY‟s highest court, the New York Court of Appeals.
  • 18. In general, you will search these courts most often.
  • 19. Here we are approaching the legal issue with natural language searching.
  • 20. LET‟S RUN THE SEARCH AGAIN, THIS TIME USING SIMPLE BOOLEAN CONNECTORS. As we saw in our prior example, Boolean searching, while not as easy as natural language searching, allows you to control your search results very specifically, and can produce more effective results!
  • 21. Boolean searching! Before jumping in and deciding that natural language is your best bet for retrieving search results, remember correct Boolean searching produces accurate results that you can compare to your natural language search results. • Connectors and Expanders & /s Or +s /p "" +p % /n ! +n * AND In same sentence OR Preceding within sentence In same paragraph Phrase Preceding within paragraph But not Within n terms of Root expander Preceding within n terms of Universal character
  • 22. Concepts: • Canine or dog or K9 • Auto or automobile or car or vehicle or truck • 4th Amendment or Search and Seizure or Right to Privacy • Search Warrant • (k9 or dog or canine) & (auto! or car or vehicle or truck) & ("4th amendment" or "search and seizure" or "right to privacy") & "search warrant"
  • 23. Notice we retrieved 19 more cases on this topic with Boolean searching! This is a perfect example of why you should not rely solely on natural language searching.
  • 25. To print, click on the arrow just to the right of the envelope icon. Your options are: Email, Print, Download or send to a Kindle. Choose Print.
  • 26. Heads up! You do NOT want to print the full text of each case! The instructions read, “Print out the list of cases and citations that match your key words and terms.”
  • 27. Let‟s print out our case.
  • 28. Pay attention to whether you want to print the entire document or just certain pages!
  • 29. AMERICAN LAW REPORTS “ALR” = a legal encyclopedia!
  • 30. American Law Reports • American Law Reports (ALR) delivers an objective, in- depth analysis of your specific legal issue, together with a complete list of every case – in every jurisdiction – that discusses it. • With thousands of attorney-authored articles covering the entire breadth of U.S. law, ALR saves you time by taking you deeper on a topic, faster. • Use ALR to: • Quickly get up to speed in an unfamiliar area of law. • Locate all relevant case law in one easy step. • Determine which cases are controlling and understand why.
  • 31. Searching for “Illinois v. Caballes” within these 1,773 results
  • 32. LET‟S GO LIVE!