Graduated from SVSU in 2004 with a B.A. in Criminal Justice Graduated from Wayne State University School of Law with a Juris Doctor (J.D.) in 2007 Admitted to the State Bar of Michigan in 2007 Attended the Oakland Police Academy in Fall of 2007 Currently work as a full time police officer at SVSU
Student Introductions Name, year in college, major, career aspirations Syllabus Case Brief Assignment Explanation Assign Cases Criminal Justice Process – Chart p. 14
Why do we have laws? Would it be better to not have a system of laws or a more lenient system of laws? Is there another way that we could achieve social control without a complex legal system? Is our system too strict or not strict enough?
Why do we have law? To achieve social control – to protect people’s lives and property and to establish socially desirable levels of order, harmony, safety, and decency. Informal methods of achieving these goals include family structures, social norms, and religion. Law: a body of rules prescribed and enforced by government for the regulation and protection of society.
Criminal law is that branch of the law prohibiting certain forms of conduct and imposing penalties on those who engage in prohibited behavior. A person cannot be convicted of a crime unless he or she has committed a specific offense against a law that provides for a penalty.
Criminal law is divided up into two parts: Substantive criminal law: prohibits certain forms of conduct by defining crimes and establishing the parameters of penalties. Procedural criminal law: regulates the enforcement of the substantive law, the determination of guilt, and the punishment of those found guilty of crimes.
Substantive law makes the possession of heroin a crime, the procedural law regulates the police search and seizure that produce the incriminating evidence. The substantive law defines what the crime is and the procedural law sets regulations on arrest, search, seizure, trials, sentencing, and appeals process.
Constitutional Supremacy: The Constitution sets forth the powers of government, the limits of those powers, and the rights of individuals. The US Constitution is supreme! Judicial Review: The power of the courts of law to invalidate substantive laws and procedures that are determined to be contrary to the Constitution.
Federalism Division of power between the states and the federal government Most day-to-day peacekeeping functions are exercised by the states (under state laws and state constitutions) Ex: Traffic tickets and most misdemeanors and felonies fall under state law. Exceptions: Bank robberies, kidnapping across state lines, drug trafficking across state lines, crimes by public officials, etc. http://www.myfoxdetroit.com/dpp/news/local/Commenting%3A-Lawyer-in-Sam- Riddle-Case
Separation of Powers: Legislative Branch – enacts laws Executive Branch – enforces and carries out the laws Judicial Branch – Interprets the laws
2 Parts Actus Reus – wrongful act Mens Rea – guilty mind; criminal intent Exceptions: strict liability crimes – selling liquor to a minor Divided into two categories Misdemeanors – Jail terms of one year or less Felonies – Prison terms of more than one year
Our legal system rests on the idea that individuals are responsible for their actions and must be accountable for them. EXCEPTION: Society recognizes that some people may lack the capacity to appreciate the wrongfulness of their conduct (Ex: young children, mentally ill) Justifications for acts that would otherwise be crimes (Ex: self-defense, defense of others)
The victim of a crime is NOT a party to the criminal prosecution. Only the prosecutor can charge an individual with a crime, the victim cannot. However, the prosecutor may decide not to bring charges against someone because the victim does not want to press charges. Once the prosecution begins, the victim is a witness. The victim may be a party to a civil suit stemming from the same incident as the criminal case.
Civil law – provides remedies for essentially private wrongs, offenses in which the state has a less direct interest. Breach of contract – occurs when a party to a contract violates the terms of the agreement. Tort – a wrongful act that does not violate any enforceable agreement but nevertheless violates a legal right of the injured party. Ex: Wrongful death, intentional or negligent infliction of personal injury, trespass, defamation of character
Example: Randy Wrecker intentionally damages a house belonging to Harvey Homeowner. Wrecker could have criminal charges brought against him and also be sued civilly. Wrecker could be prosecuted by the state for willful destruction of property (MDOP) and may also be sued by Homeowner for the tort of wrongful destruction of property. The state would be seeking to punish Wrecker for his antisocial conduct and Homeowner would be seeking compensation for the damage to his property. Criminal case would be titled People v. Wrecker, or State v. Wrecker. Civil case would be titled Homeowner v. Wrecker.
Famous Example: OJ Simpson case The jury delivered a not guilty verdict in the criminal case, but Simpson was found liable in the civil case for the wrongful death of Nicole Brown Simpson. The jury in the civil case awarded the plaintiffs 8.5 million dollars. How do both cases come out differently? Different trials, different juries. Burden of proof differs in civil and criminal cases. Criminal case must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt. Civil case must only be proved by a preponderance of the evidence
English common law Stare Decisis – relying on past precedent to rule on cases Sometimes courts encounter situations where precedent does not or should not apply (times and circumstances change). In these situations, courts will sometimes deviate from or overturn prior precedent. Also, there are times when there is no applicable precedent. When these situations occur, the appellate courts have the opportunity to make new law. Eventually, the common law was codified into statutes by the states
Fed government’s role in the CJ system has always been more limited than the states Congress does not possess police power – the broad authority to enact prohibitions to protect public order, safety, decency, welfare, etc. However, Congress does possess authority to enact criminal statutes that relate to Congress’s particular legislative powers. Ex: commerce clause (carjacking, kidnapping, wire fraud, drug trafficking) , immigration, use of mail, civil rights
US v. Morrison FACTS: Congress passed Violence Against Women Act which said that all persons shall have the right to be free from crimes of violence motivated by gender. To enforce this right, the Act then said that a woman who was a victim of such a gender- motivated violent crime could bring a civil suit against the perpetrator in federal court. A female student at Virginia Tech said she was raped by two members of the football team. The female student sued the football players in federal court under this act. The football players argued that the act passed by Congress was beyond Congress’ powers and therefore unconstitutional.
HOLDING: The Court agreed with the defendants (football players) and said that the act was beyond Congress’ commerce power. Court said that the activity being regulated was essentially non-economic and therefore did not affect interstate commerce. “We accordingly reject the argument that Congress may regulate noneconomic, violent criminal conduct based solely on that conduct’s aggregate effect on interstate commerce..” (p. 11) The Court’s decision in Morrison reinforced the traditional notion that Congressional authority to enact criminal law is much more limited than that of the states.
Created by statutes, court decisions, and the development of rules of procedure. Generally, the highest court of each state (Michigan Supreme Court) has the power to make rules of procedure for the courts of that state. Also, remember, the US Constitution greatly contributes to the rules of procedure. 4th Amendment – search and seizure 5th Amendment – protection against self- incrimination
Bill of Rights Constitutes much of the basis for criminal procedure. All of the provisions of the Bill of Rights have been held to apply with equal force to the states and to the national government. Duncan v. Louisiana
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
Due process clause found in the 5th and 14th Amendment These provisions forbid the government from taking one’s life, liberty, or property without “due process” of law. Due Process refers to those procedural safeguards necessary to ensure the fundamental fairness of a legal proceeding. Fair notice and a fair hearing Persons accused of crimes must have ample opportunity to learn of the charges and evidence being brought against them as well as the opportunity to contest those charges and that evidence in open court.
Presumption of innocence Innocent until proven guilty Prosecutor must establish the defendant’s guilt on each element of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt. The burden of proof is on the prosecutor to show that that defendant is guilty, not on the defendant to prove his innocence.
Only a fraction of criminal cases actually make it to a formal trial. To avoid trial, which is characterized by both delay and uncertainty, the prosecutor may attempt to persuade the defendant to plead guilty, either by reducing the number or severity of the charges or by promising not to seek the maximum penalty allowed by law. Plea bargains are a necessary tool in our criminal justice system. The USSC has upheld the practice of plea bargaining. Brady v. US; North Carolina v. Alford
It is the judge’s responsibility to make sure the defendant’s guilty plea is voluntarily and knowingly entered and that there is some factual basis for the offense charged. Boykin v. Alabama
Legislative Powers of Congress Enumerated powers: those that are mentioned specifically in Article I, Sec. 8 of the Constitution (ex: power to tax, power to print money). Of these enumerated powers, only two are directly related to criminal justice – provide for the punishment of counterfeiting the securities and current coin of the US and to define and punish piracies and felonies committed on the high seas, and offenses against the Law of Nations. Commerce clause power has allowed Congress to have much broader authority
Implied Powers Those that are deemed “necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested..in the Government of the Us, or in any Department or Officer thereof..” Congress has passed many federal criminal laws under this clause USCA – United States Code Annotated (p. 609) (State laws have something similar to USCA)
Rules of Statutory Interpretation Courts have developed certain techniques to apply when a statute appears unclear as related to specific factual scenario. Plain meaning rule – Look at the plain language of the statute Courts often try to look at or guess at the legislative intent behind the statute Void for vagueness – Court may strike down a particular statute because it is too vague. Every criminal statute should be sufficiently precise to give fair warning of its meaning. Implied exceptions (ex: speeding emergency vehicles)
Charged with enforcing the law They have the power to investigate criminal activity, arrest suspected criminals, and to detain arrested persons until their cases come before the appropriate courts of law. US has over 20,000 police agencies at the federal, state, and local levels. These agencies employ over 800,000 sworn officers. Federal Law Enforcement FBI – employs over 25,000 including more than 10,000 special agents located in every state and 21 different countries Other Federal agencies – US Marshal, ATF, DEA, IRS, National Park Service, US Forest Service, Secret Service, Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (Border Patrol, ICE)
State and Local Agencies State police (MSP), County Sheriffs, City and Township departments, University Police, DNR, State Park Rangers. All of these agencies have different jurisdictions, but try to work together for a common goal. Community Policing Officers becoming more involved in the community; create a non-adversial relationship with members of the community
Prosecutors determine whether to bring charges against suspected criminals. They have a lot of discretion to determine whether to prosecute at all and what charges to file. Primary actor in the plea bargaining process and have a major influence over the severity of sanctions imposed on persons convicted of crimes. Prosecutors must work together with the police in order for the system to operate smoothly and efficiently.
Federal Prosecutors Chief Federal Prosecutor is the US Attorney General, who is the head of the Dept. of Justice (Appointed by the President). Below the Attorney General, there are several US Attorneys (also appointed by the President), each responsible for prosecuting federal crimes within a particular federal district. The US Attorneys then have assistant US attorneys who handle most of the day-to- day cases.
Federal Prosecutors Congress has also provided for the appt of Independent counsel – special prosecutors in cases involving alleged misconduct by high govt officials. Ex: Watergate; Kenneth Starr’s appt to investigate Whitewater scandal involving Bill Clinton
Chief legal officer of each state – Attorney General District, state, and assistant attorneys Local prosecutors are elected for set terms of office and responsible for prosecuting crimes within their jurisdiction
Prosecutors not only determine the level of offense to be charged; but also whether to charge at all Nolle Prosequi – Allows a prosecutor not to proceed in a given case irrespective of the factual basis for prosecution. Reasons? – Secure cooperation of a defendant; allow defendant to participate in a diversionary program (ex: drug court)
6th Amendment “In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district where in the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.” Supreme Court has held that a defendant has the right to be represented by an attorney at all criminal proceedings that may substantially affect the rights of the accused. Mempa v. Rhay Also, a defendant has the right to hire his/her own attorney of his choosing.
Beginning in the 1960’s, the USSC greatly expanded the right to counsel by requiring states to provide attorneys to indigent defendants. Argersinger v. Hamlin; Gideon v. Wainwright
Facts: D was charged in FL with having broken and entered a poolroom with intent to commit a misdemeanor. This was a felony under FL law. Fl law only provided for assistance of counsel in capital cases. D asked for a lawyer and was denied. D represented himself at trial and was convicted. D was sentenced to 5 years in prison. D appealed his convicted to FL state Supreme Court who denied his appeal. D then appealed to USSC, who overturned his conviction. The USSC overruled a prior case Betts v. Brady. Gideon – “In our adversary system of criminal justice, any person haled into court, who is too poor to hire a lawyer, cannot be assured a fair trial unless counsel is provided for him.” “…Lawyers in criminal courts are necessities, not luxuries.”
Gideon held that an indigent has a constitutional right to assistance of counsel at trial. However, Gideon involved a felony trial. In Argersinger, the USSC considered the applicability of Gideon to misdemeanor trials. Facts: D was charged with carrying a concealed weapon, a misdemeanor for which the max penalty was imprisonment for 6 months, a $1000 fine, or both. D requested, but was denied assistance of counsel. D represented himself and was convicted and sentenced to 90 days in jail. D appealed his conviction.
State Supreme Court affirmed D’s conviction stating that the right to appt of counsel applied to only non- petty offenses (offenses carrying a penalty of more than 6 months in jail). USSC overturned the conviction. USSC said that the same rationale that was used in Gideon is applicable to any criminal trial where an accused is deprived of his liberty. Argersinger expanded the right to counsel to not only felonies (like in Gideon), but also misdemeanors.
A defense attorney is charged with zealously representing his/her client and ensuring that the D’s constitutional rights are fully protected. Must advise the defendant on the best course of action – whether to take a plea deal; alternative sentences; gauge the strength of the prosecution’s case Keep the system honest Not their function to determine whether the D is guilty or not
Grand Jury Serve to consider whether there is sufficient evidence to bring charges against someone Used in Federal Courts; is not required by the Constitution for state courts 16-23 people serve on a federal grand jury; 12 must vote to return an indictment in federal court
Petit (Trial) Juries Sit to hear evidence at a trial and render a verdict accordingly Art. III, Sec. 2 of the US Const. establishes the right to trial by jury in criminal cases 6th Amendment guarantees “the right to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury.” 12 people required in federal juries; varies in state juries, but all states require 12 for capital cases USSC has approved the use of 6 person juries in non- capital cases
Federal Courts adjudicate cases involving violations of federal law; State Courts adjudicate cases involving violations of state law Trial courts conduct criminal trials and various pretrial and post-trial proceedings. Appellate courts hear appeals from the decisions of the trial courts. Correct legal errors made by trial courts and develop law when new legal questions arise Jurisdiction – the legal authority to hear and try a case Must have subject matter jurisdiction and personal jurisdiction
U.S. District Courts Handle prosecutions for violations of federal statutes Review convictions from state courts when defendants raise issues arising under the U.S. Constitution Principal trial court in federal system Trials are presided over by a judge appointed for life by the President with the consent of the Senate
The U.S. Courts of Appeals Intermediate appellate courts (circuit courts) 12 circuits cover the U.S. (p.32) Michigan is in the 6th Circuit along with Ohio, Kentucky, and Tennessee Hear both criminal and civil appeals from the district courts Decisions rendered by panels of 3 judges – affirm, reverse, or modify Judges appointed to life terms by the President and confirmed by the Senate
United States Supreme Court Highest appellate court in the federal judicial system Jurisdiction to review, either on appeal or by writ of certiorari (discretionary review), all the decisions of the lower federal courts and many decisions of the highest state courts Comprised of 9 justices appointed for life by the President with the consent of the Senate Have the final word in determining what the U.S. Constitution requires, permits, and prohibits in the areas of law enforcement, prosecution, adjudication, and punishment. In 2005, received about 7500 petitions for certiorari and granted review in only 87 (just over 1%). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SZnW_ffOmH8 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_dnp_01e4Qw&feature=related
Military Tribunals Art. 1, Sec. 8 of the U.S. Const. grants Congress the authority to regulate armed forces. Under this authority, Congress has enacted the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). The UCMJ gives courts-martial jurisdiction to try all offenses under the code committed by military personnel. Decisions of courts-martial are reviewed by military courts of review in each branch of the armed forces. Some appeals are heard by the US Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces, which is staffed by civilian judges who are appointed to 15 year terms by the President with the consent of the Senate. Generally, only under conditions of martial law do military tribunals have the authority to try American citizens.
Every state has its own court system and each is set up differently. Every state has one or more levels of trial court and at least one appellate court. Courts of general jurisdiction – conduct trials in felony and major misdemeanor cases Usually called circuit courts in MI Courts of limited jurisdiction – Handle pretrial matters and trials in minor misdemeanor cases. Most states also have a Court of Appeals and State Supreme Court Most state also have separate juvenile courts
Includes specialized courts, law enforcement agencies, social service agencies, and corrections facilities designed to address problems of juvenile delinquency and child abuse and neglect. Theory behind juvenile system is that juveniles need more rehabilitation rather than punishment Parens Patriae – the power of the state to act to protect the interests of those who cannot protect themselves.
In the late 1960’s, the juvenile system was reformed to create more due process rights for juveniles. In re Gault – basic procedural safeguards applied to adults also applied to juveniles – right to counsel, right against self- incrimination, right to confront witnesses. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PAS4uSDJe9k
Designed to fulfill the CJ’s system objective of providing punishment and rehabilitation of offenders Criminal punishment is limited by the 8th Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment Provides for a variety of punishments including monetary fines, incarceration, probation, community service, and the death penalty. Just like the court system, there is a federal and state corrections system. Rehabilitate? June 2005 – 2.2 Million inmates in the US http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYJJEnTn9P0 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hMnk7lh9M3o