Criminal Law and Criminal Punishment
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Conduct that unjustifiably and inexcusably inflicts or threatens substantial harm to individual or public interests
private wrongs for which you can sue the party who wronged you and recover money
crimes of moral turpitude
conduct that is contrary to justice, honesty, and morality.
-murder,manslaughter,burglary, arson, robbery, stealing, rape, and sodomy
serious crimes that are generally punishable by one year or more in prison.
-assault, battery, false imprisonment, libel, perjury, corrupting morals, and disturbing peace
minor crimes for which the penalty is usually less than one year in jail or a fine.
general part of criminal law
-consists of principles that apply to more thatn one crime
principals that apply to all crimes
special part of criminal law
-arranges groups based on subject matter
defines the elements of specific crimes
common law crimes
crimes originating in the English common law
codified (criminal law)
written definitions of crimes and punishments enacted by legislature and punishable.
Model Penal Code (MPC)
the code developed by the American Law Institute to guide reform in criminal law.
analysis of criminal liability
-conduct the unjustifiably and inexcusabl inflicts or threatens substantial harm to individual or public interests.
violations of federal and state agency rules.
structure of the U.S. gobernment divided into federal and state governments.
rates of imprisonment
number of prisoners per 100,000 people in the population
intentional infliction of pain on a person convicted of a crime.
-penalties have to meet criteria-inflict pain or other unpleasant consequences, prescribe a punishment in the same law that defines the crime, administered intentionally, and state has to administer them
punishments prescribed by legislatures.
-only right if offenders choose in committing crimes or not
-culpability and justice
punishmnet base on just deserts
punishing offenders to prevent ceimes int he future.
aims by threat of punishment to deter crimnal behavior in the general population.
the threat of punishment aimed at individual offenders in the hope of deterring future criminal conduct.
punishment by imprisonment, mutilation, and even death.
prevention of crime by treatment
the theory that the validity of a law should be measured by the extent to which it promotes the greatest good for the greatest number of people
the proportionality of the punishment to the crime.
the theory that excluding evidence obtained in violation of the constitution prevents illegal law enforcement.
principal of utility
permitting only the minimum amount of pain necessary to prevent the crime as punishment.
"medical model" of criminal law
the medical model is based onthe idea that crime is a disease that expers can diagnose, treat, and cure
determinism (and criminal punishment)
actions beyond the control of individual free will
indeterminate sentencing laws
legislatures set only the outer limits of possible penalties, and judges, and corrections professionals decide actual sentence lengths.
fixed (determinate) sentences
sentences that fit the punishment to the crime
presumption of innocence
the government always has the burden to justife its use of power even against people who turn out to be guilty
burden of proof
the affirmation duty to prove a point in dispute: the responsibility to produce the evidence to persuade the fact finder.
proof beyond a reasonable doubt
proof that overcomes the doubt that prevents one from being firmly conviced of a defendant's guilt, or the belief that there is a real possibility that a defendant is not guilty.
the doubt that prevents one from being firmly convinced of a defendant's guilt, or the belief that there is a real possibility that a defendat is not guilty.
trials without juries, in which judges find the facts.
latin name for "body of the crime"
defenses in which the defendant bears the burden of destruction.
burden of production
the responsibility to introduce initial evidence to support a defense.
burden of persuasion
the responsibility to convince the fact finder of the truth of the defense.
preponderance of the evidence
more than 50 percent of the evidence proves justification or excuse
discretionary decision making
judicial criminal lawmaking power that leaves judges lots of leeway for making deceisions based on their professional training and experience.
not guilty verdict
fact finder decides the prosecution has not proven guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
decision of the fact finder that the prosection has proven guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
judgement (in criminal cases)
court's decision in case.
opinion (in criminal case)
part of an appellate court case that explains the court's reasons for its decision.
concurring opinion (in criminal cases)
statements in which justices agree with the decision but not the reasoning of a court's opinion.
plurality opinion (in criminal cases)
a statement in which the greatest number, but not a majority, of the justices favor a court's decision.
source reference to a case or other legal authority
states that have abolished the common law
- 52 criminal codes
- -50 states
- -District of Columbia
- -U.S. Criminal code
The Parts of a case Excerpts
Title, Citation, Procedural history, Judge, Facts
names of the parties-appellants, appellees, petitioners, respondents
the party appealing the case
the party appealed against
parties bringing a case in habeas corpus or certiorari
parties petitioned against in habeas corpus and certiorari
tells you where to find the case
a brief description of the steps and judgements made by each court that has heard the case.
the name of the judge is the judge who weote the opinion and isseud the court's judgment in the case.
critical starting point in reading and analyzing cases.
- how the court disposes of the case.
- In trial courts, guilty or not guilty
- In Appeals courts, affirmed, reversed, or remanded
Opinion has two essentials--
-The courts holding (the legal rule the court has decided to appluy to the fces of the cases)
-The court's reasoning (reasons the court gives to support its holding.
courts opinion is more important than the judgment. It backs up the judgment by explaining how and why the courts applied the law to the facts of the case.
Briefing a case page 34-35
What are the facts? What is the legal issue in the case? What are the arfuments in the court's opinion, State the courts decision.
- State v. Metzger 319 N.W. 2d 459 (Neb. 1982)
- N.W. 2d*Northwestern Reporter, Second Series
- 459*page #
- (Neb. 1982)* Nebraske Supreme Court in the year 1982
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