Criminal Justice Magazine, Winter 2009 (Vol. 23/ No. 4)
Access to articles from this issue, unless noted otherwise, requires ABA membership password.
COVER STORY The Criminalization of Negligence Under the Clean Water Ac t By David E. Roth, Stephen R. Spivack, and Joseph G. Block
A container ship heads for open water in the San Francisco Bay, piloted by a specialist. Yet somehow it goes astray and hits a support for the Bay Bridge, tearing open the hull and dumping 58,000 gallons of fuel oil into the water. A year later the pilot is charged under section 309(c)(1) of the Clean Water Act with criminal negligence for polluting the bay. In this article, the authors suggest it is time for the Supreme Court to revisit the question it declined to review in an earlier case of whether it is appropriate to criminally charge an individual for negligent as opposed to intentional conduct.
Drawing on experts from all areas of the criminal justice system, the Standards have served as the benchmark of criminal law for prosecutors, defenders, and judges from trial courts up to the Supreme Court. The Hon. Martin Marcus, chair of the ABA Criminal Justice Standards Committee, details the evolution of the Standards and their continuing application to the daily practice of law.
With statistics that predict one of every three African-American males born today will spend time in state or federal prison, some state legislatures are reviewing policies and practices that may unfairly contribute to such racial disparity. Author Marc Mauer of the Sentencing Project discusses how racial impact statements work to inform lawmakers about hidden consequences of well-intentioned legislation.
Limited Voir Dire: Why It Fails to Detect Jury Bias By Rachael A. Ream
The article draws on the results of a number of research studies to explain why traditional methods of voir dire often fail to expose a juror’s preexisting prejudices. According to the author, much of the time spent on voir dire is directed at “educating” jurors as to their role in the process. Although important, this approach fails to bring to light the information judges and lawyers need to seat the panel with the least bias toward the case. The article concludes with an examination of the scientific jury selection model.
Winner of the 2008 William W. Greenhalgh Student Writing Competition, the article looks at the dramatic impact Crawford and Davis have had on determining what is and is not testimonial when dealing with cases of child and sexual abuse in which non-law enforcement personnel, such as doctors or social workers, elicit potentially important victim statements in the course of their own work.
Chair’s Counsel (available to public)
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