Table of contents for Courts : a text reader / Cassia Spohn, Craig Hemmens.

Bibliographic record and links to related information available from the Library of Congress catalog.

Note: Contents data are machine generated based on pre-publication provided by the publisher. Contents may have variations from the printed book or be incomplete or contain other coding.

Introduction: Courts and Case Processing
Why Study Courts?
Some Definitions
The Structure and Jurisdiction of U.S. Courts
A Brief Historical Overview
Federal Courts
State Courts
Other Courts
Courtroom Actors
Defense Attorneys
Other Actors
Court Process
Sentencing and Appeals
Decision Making
The Wedding Cake
The Courtroom Workgroup
Plea Bargaining
Overview of the Book
Key Terms
Discussion Questions
Web Resources
How to Read a Research Article
Section I. Overview of Courts
Conflict: The Wellspring of the Modern Court
Why Government Courts?
How Courts Make Law
Stare Decisis and Precedent
The Role of the Courts in Criminal Justice
Striking a Difficult Balance
Due Process
Crime Control
The Ongoing Battle
The Juvenile Court
Key Terms
Discussion Questions
Web Resources
The Process is the Punishment: Handling Cases in a Lower Criminal Court
M. Feeley
A classic study of the lower criminal courts that process the millions of defendants cited for traffic offenses and charged with minor crimes each year.
Discussion Questions
The Honest Politician?s Guide to Juvenile Justice in the Twenty-First Century
Barry C. Feld
Discusses the deficiencies of the juvenile court modeled on the doctrine of parens patiae and calls for replacing the traditional juvenile court an integrated criminal justice system that views the youth of the offender as a mitigating circumstance.
Discussion Questions
The Rehnquist Court and Criminal Justice: An Empircal Assessment
Christopher E. Smith
Examines the operation of the United States Supreme Court under the leadership of (now deceased) Justice William Renquist.
Discussion Questions
Section II. Prosecutors and Defense Attorneys
The Adversarial System
Why Adversarialism?
Prosecutors and Defense Attorneys: Mortal Enemies?
Prosecutors? Charging Decisions
Factors Affecting Charging Decisions
Constraints on Prosecutorial Discretion
The Changing Role of the American Prosecutor: Community Prosecution
Defense Attorneys
Do You Get What You Pay For?
Constraints on Defense Attorneys
Key Terms
Discussion Questions
Web Resources
Prosecutorial Justifications for Sexual Assault Case Rejection: Guarding the ?Gateway to Justice?
C. D. Spohn, Beichner, and E. Davis-Frenzel
Analyzes the reasons given by prosecutors for rejecting charges in sexual assault cases.
Discussion Questions
Modeling Prosecutors? Charging Decisions in Domestic Violence Cases
John L. Worrall, Jay W. Ross, and Eric S. McCord
Examines the factors that affect the decision to charge or not and the decision whether to file felony or misdemeanor charges in cases involving domestic violence.
Discussion Questions
Prosecutorial Discretion in Seeking Death: An Analysis of Racial Disparity in the Pretrial Stages of Case Processing in a Midwestern County
Jon Sorensen and Donald H. Wallace
Analyzes the decisions made by a prosecutor in homicide cases to determine if those who kill whites are more likely than those who kill blacks to be sentenced to death.
Discussion Questions
The Criminal Defense Lawyer: Zealous Advocate, Double Agent, or Beleaguered Dealer?
Rodney J. Uphoff
Examines the practices of defense attorneys in three jurisdictions, with an eye toward determining whether they fit Abraham Blumberg?s assessment of defense attorneys as ?double-agents? rather than ?zealous advocates.?
Discussion Questions
Indigent Defenders Get the Job Done and Done Well
Roger A. Hanson and Brian J. Ostrom
A description and analysis of the indigent defense systems found in nine trial courts of general jurisdiction in seven states.
Discussion Questions
Negotiating a Plea: Bargaining With the Devil
Seymour Wishman
A fascinating first-hand account of negotiating a guilty plea in a murder case.
Discussion Questions
Section III. Judges and Jurors
Judges and Jurors: Fact Finding and Applying the Law
Constraints on Judges
The Politics of Judicial Selection
Judicial Decision-Making
Diversity on the Bench
Nonlawyer Judges: A Dying Breed?
Issues in Jury Selection
Jury Consultants: Useful?
Factors Affecting Jury Decision-Making
Jury Nullification
Key Terms
Discussion Questions
Web Resources
Women and Men Policymakers: Does the Judge?s Gender Affect the Sentencing of Criminal Defendants?
D. Steffensmeier and C. Hebert
Analyzes the factors that affect the sentencing decisions of male and female judges in Pennsylvania.
Discussion Questions
Judges and the Politics of Death: Deciding Between the Bill of Rights and the Next Election in Capital Cases
Stephen B. Bright and Patrick J. Keenan
Examines judges decisions in capital cases, with a focus on the pressures faced by elected judges in these types of cases.
Discussion Questions
Juror Decision Making in Hate Crime Cases
Phyllis B. Gerstenfeld
Uses a mock-jury approach to investigate whether stereotypes and prejudice encourage people, particularly whites, to characterize a crime as a hate crime when it is committed by an African American.
Discussion Questions
Gazing Into the Crystal Ball: Can Jurors Accurately Predict Dangerousness in Capital Cases?
James W. Marquart, Sheldon Ekland-Olson, and Jonathan R. Sorensen 
Examines jury decisions in capital cases to determine if jurors are able to make accurate predictions of future dangerousness.
Discussion Questions
Racially Based Jury Nullification: Black Power in the Criminal Justice System
Paul Butler
Addresses the issue of jury nullification and calls for black jurors to nullify the law in some types of cases involving black offenders.
Discussion Questions
Section IV. Plea Bargaining and Trial Dynamics
The Court Process
Plea Bargaining
Defining Plea Bargaining
Ad Hoc Plea Bargaining
Arguments for and Against Plea Bargaining
Attempts to Restrict or Ban Plea Bargaining
The Predictors of Plea Bargaining Decisions: Does Race Matter?
Plea Bargaining Scholarship
The Courtroom Workgroup: Cooperation Rather than Conflict
The Courtroom Workgroup and Local Legal Culture
Workgroup Circumvention of Policy Changes
Media Influence in Criminal Trials
Key Terms
Discussion Questions
Web Resources
Prosecutorial Discretion and Plea Bargaining in the United States, France, Germany, and Italy: A Comparative Perspective
Yue Ma
Compares prosecutorial practices and plea bargaining decisions in the United States with those in France, Germany and Italy.
Discussion Questions
The Impact of Arizona?s Mandatory Drug Treatment Law on Prosecutorial Plea Bargaining in Drug Cases
Vincent J. Webb and Nancy Rodriguez
Assesses whether charging and plea bargaining decisions in cases involving low-level drug offenders changed following the passage of an Arizona proposition mandating drug treatment for certain types of drug offenders.
Discussion Questions
It?s Not the Old Ball Game: Three Strikes and the Courtroom Workgroup
John C. Harris and Paul Jesilow
Examines the effect of California?s Three Strikes law on the operation of the courtroom workgroup, with a focus on whether the workgroup had been able to circumvent or nullify the law.
Discussion Questions
Juvenile Justice Reform and the Courtroom Workgroup: Issues of Perception and Workload
Erika Gebo, Nena F. Stracuzzi, and Valerie Hurst 
Addresses the operation of a courtroom workgroup in a juvenile justice system; the authors examine the workgroup?s adaptation to a rule mandating the use of a risk assessment instrument.
Discussion Questions
The Entertainment Value of a Trial: How Media Access to the Courtroom Is Changing the American Judicial Process
Jeffrey S. Johnson
Discusses how jurisdictions handle the question of cameras in the courtroom and examines Supreme Court decisions regarding media presence during court proceedings.
Discussion Questions
Section V. Sentencing
The Goals of Sentencing
Retribution: The ?Just Deserts? Theory of Punishment
Utilitarian Justifications for Punishment
The Judge?s Options at Sentencing
The Death Penalty
Intermediate Sanctions
The Future of Intermediate Sanctions
How Do Judges Decide?
Modeling the Sentencing Process
Crime Seriousness and Prior Criminal Record
Offender Characteristics
Victim Characteristics
Case Processing Attributes
Sentencing: An Inexact Science
Key Terms
Discussion Questions
Web Resources
The Brothel Boy
Norval Morris
Examines the philosophical justifications for punishment of the so-called ?brothel boy,? who was arrested for unintentionally killing a young girl.
Discussion Questions
Is Preferential Treatment of Female Offenders a Thing of the Past? A Multi-Site Study of Gender, Race, and Imprisonment
Cassia Spohn and Dawn Beichner
Examines whether female offenders receive more lenient sentences than male offenders and addresses the question of whether more lenient treatment is reserved for white female offenders.
Discussion Questions
Interactive Effects of Victim Race and Gender on Death Sentence Disparity Findings
Marian R. Williams and Jefferson E. Holcomb
Examines capital sentencing decisions in Ohio to determine if those who murder white females are more likely than those who murder other types of victims to be sentenced to death.
Discussion Questions
The Juvenile Penalty: A Comparison of Juvenile and Young Adult Sentencing Outcomes in Criminal Court
Megan C. Kurlychek and Brian D. Johnson
Compares the sentences imposed on juvenile offenders transferred to adult court with the sentences imposed on similarly situated young adult offenders.
Discussion Questions
Section VI. Specialized Courts and Other Trends in Adjudication
Trendy Courts?
The Specialized Court Movement
Distinguishing Features
Drug Courts
Domestic Violence Courts
Other Specialized Courts
Do Specialized Courts Work?
The Amalgamation of Justice
Restorative Justice
Restorative Justice in Action
Combining Restorative Justice with Shaming
Key Terms
Discussion Questions
Web Resources
The Baltimore City Drug Treatment Court: One-Year Results from a Randomized Study
Denise C. Gottfredson and M. Lyn Exum
An evaluation of a drug court program in which eligible offenders were randomly assigned either to the drug court or to traditional adjudication.
Discussion Questions
Combating Domestic Violence: Findings from an Evaluation of a Local Domestic Violence Court
Angela R. Gover, John M. MacDonald, and Geoffrey P. Alpert
An evaluation of a domestic violence court located in a rural county in South Carolina.
Discussion Questions
A Therapeutic Jurisprudence Approach to the Trial Process in Domestic Violence Felony Trials
Carolyn Copps Hartley
Focuses on the role of therapeutic jurisprudence in domestic violence felony trials and discusses how the traditional adjudication approach is not therapeutic for victims.
Discussion Questions
Teen Court Referral, Sentencing, and Subsequent Recidivism: Two Proportional Hazards Models and a Little Speculation
Andrew Rasmussen
An evaluation of a teen court, with a focus on recidivism rates of youth given various types of sentences.
Discussion Questions
Section VII. Beyond Conviction and Sentencing
What Happens Next?
The Appellate Process
Timing Issues
Harmless Errors
Appellate Court Relationships
Appellate Court Judges
Habeas Corpus
Origins of the Writ
Process Concerns
The Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act
Considering Clemency
Key Terms
Discussion Questions
Web Resources
Appellate Court Supervision in the Federal Judiciary: A Hierarchical Perspective
Susan B. Haire, Stefanie A. Lindquist, and Donald R. Songer
An examination of the factors that influence appellate supervision of federal district courts.
Discussion Questions
Measuring the Preferences of State Supreme Court Judges
Paul Brace, Laura Langer, and Melinda Gann Hall
Addresses the issue of whether the political party affiliations of judges influence the decisions they hand down and develops a measure of judge preferences that can be used in a variety of court contexts.
Discussion Questions
The Federal Habeas Corpus Process: Unraveling the Issues
Robert D. Pursley
Explores the historical origins of the writ of habeas corpus, its evolution, recent efforts to limit its use in federal courts, and the major issues that it presents courts today. 
Discussion Questions
Who Has the Body? The Paths to Habeas Corpus Reform
Cary Federman
Discusses the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA) of 1996, and places it within a political and historical framework that describes the effort by the Supreme Court and Congress to limit inmates? access to federal courts through the writ of habeas corpus.
Discussion Questions
Identity, Strategy, and Feminist Politics: Clemency for Battered Women Who Kill
Patricia Gagn¿
Examines Ohio Governor Richard Celeste?s decision to grant clemency to 26 women who were imprisoned for assaulting or killing abusive partners or stepfathers.
Discussion Questions
About the Authors

Library of Congress Subject Headings for this publication:

Courts -- United States.
Justice, Administration of -- United States.