Acquittal: An Insider Reveals the Stories and Strategies Behind Today's Most Infamous Verdicts

Acquittal: An Insider Reveals the Stories and Strategies Behind Today's Most Infamous Verdicts

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by Richard Gabriel
     
 

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October 3, 1995. The shocking outcome of the O.J. Simpson trial leaves a nation divided. July 5, 2011. Casey Anthony walks free despite being convicted by millions on cable news and social media.

There are times when something as supposedly simple as a just verdict rises to the level of cultural touchstone. Often these moments hinge on logic that seems

Overview

October 3, 1995. The shocking outcome of the O.J. Simpson trial leaves a nation divided. July 5, 2011. Casey Anthony walks free despite being convicted by millions on cable news and social media.

There are times when something as supposedly simple as a just verdict rises to the level of cultural touchstone. Often these moments hinge on logic that seems flawed and inexplicable—until now. In Acquittal, leading trial consultant Richard Gabriel explains how some of the most controversial verdicts in recent times came to be.

Drawing on more than twenty-eight years of experience, Gabriel provides firsthand accounts of his work on high-profile cases, from the tabloid trials of Casey Anthony, O.J. Simpson, Phil Spector, and Heidi Fleiss to the political firestorms involving Enron and Whitewater. An expert on court psychology and communications, Gabriel offers unique insights on defendants, prosecutors, judges, witnesses, journalists, and the most important people in the room: the jury.

Through play-by-play breakdowns of the proceedings, Gabriel reveals the differences between a court of law and the court of public opinion, the convoluted mechanics behind jury selection, strategies for creating a careful balance of evidence and doubt, and the difficulties of providing a fair trial in the digital age. Along the way, Gabriel raises hard questions about not only the legal system but about the possibility of justice in an oversaturated media landscape.

The courtroom is a natural theater. The stakes are high. The roles are all too familiar. And there is always the chance of a twist ending. Acquittal is a revelatory guide to this riveting, frustrating, fascinating world—the most unpredictable drama in American life.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
05/12/2014
Trial consultant Gabriel illuminates the inner-workings of the justice system, discussing his involvement with some very famous cases and how the juries reached their decisions. Gabriel comprehensively explores juror bias; the negative impact of the 24 hour news cycle; and a trial consultant's objective to "speak the separate languages of the lawyer, the judge, and the jury." On the O.J Simpson case, which Gabriel calls "a bizarre and seductive carnival," he explains the defense's strategy of seeking jurors "more receptive to... themes of police error and misconduct" due to the many mistakes committed during the investigation. Gabriel discusses the roles he played working for the defense in the celebrity trials of Heidi Fleiss and Phil Spector, and the book culminates in the fever pitch of the Casey Anthony trial where the defense attempted to "harness the hysteria and use it to advantage." He also calls jury selection for a death penalty case, "part poker, part chess, and part roulette." While these verdicts may have seemed shocking or even miscarriages of justice, Gabriel's account effectively shows that jurors, despite their personal biases, are fulfilling their responsibilities admirably. (June)
From the Publisher
Acquittal is the ultimate courtroom insider showing why Richard Gabriel and his team of trial consultants are on my speed dial.”— Linda Kenney Baden, Trial Attorney and Author of Remains Silent and Skeleton Justice
 
“A riveting read…[Gabriel is] the go-to trial consultant for high profile cases.”— Michael M. Baden, M.D. Former Chief Medical Examiner of New York City, Host of the HBO Autopsy Series and Author of Unnatural Death and Dead Reckoning
 
“Fascinating stories from inside the legal landmark cases of the last twenty years.  More than just a memoir or a journalistic account of these famous trials, Gabriel reveals the struggles, sorrows, twists and turns as prosecutors, defense attorneys, and high-profile defendants wage battle in court and on the public stage.”— Shawn Holley, celebrity attorney
 
Acquittal is the essential book for anyone who wants to truly understand the justice system today.”— Don Winslow, author of Savages and Kings of Cool
 
“Truth is stranger than fiction, especially in the courtroom…[Gabriel gives] us surprising and dramatic new revelations about cases that we thought we knew. Acquittal’s chapters are filled with real life legal thrillers.”— Michelle Ward, PhD, Producer and host of the Investigation Discovery series, Stalked: Someone’s Watching.
 
“Richard Gabriel doesn’t just take you inside the courtroom of the nation’s most watched trials, he takes you inside the minds of the players: their strategies and their moves. With explicit detail, Acquittal instantly captures your interest, presenting reality with the ease of the finest fiction novel. Except these cases were real and Gabriel lived them. While these are the cases we all followed on TV and the newspapers, we now get to step inside the inner sanctum for insights not previously available into our nation’s most notorious trials.”— Paul Lisnek, J.D., Ph.D, Author of The Hidden Jury and Art of Lawyering, political analyst on WGN-TV, and Host of Politics Tonight on CLTV
Library Journal
★ 08/01/2014
Prominent jury-selection consultant Gabriel (coauthor, Jury Selection Strategy & Science) has written a fascinating book that illuminates the arcane process of successful jury selection. Combining perspectives from law and psychology, the author is able to profile prospective jurors and advise attorneys when they are selecting jury panels for their trials. Drawing upon high-profile cases for which he has served as consultant, Gabriel reveals strategies he has used to predict jury behavior, so that acquittal is a possibility—even when "celebrity" defendants have already been tried in the "court of public opinion." He provides an insider's view of selection and trial strategy in infamous cases with defendants such as O.J. Simpson, Heidi Fleiss (the Hollywood Madam), Phil Spector, and Casey Anthony. In each instance, Gabriel tailored his profiles and recommendations to help create a jury most favorable to the defendant. VERDICT Remarkably, this book will intrigue professional and lay readers alike. Indeed, it should be required reading for trial advocacy classes in law school. Perfect for readers of James D. Zirin's The Mother Court: Tales of Cases That Mattered in America's Greatest Trial Court.—Lynne Maxwell, West Virginia Univ. Coll. of Law Lib., Morgantown

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780425269718
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
06/03/2014
Pages:
336
Sales rank:
320,156
Product dimensions:
6.40(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.20(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
Acquittal is the ultimate courtroom insider showing why Richard Gabriel and his team of trial consultants are on my speed dial.”—Linda Kenney Baden, Trial Attorney and Author of Remains Silent and Skeleton Justice
 
“A riveting read…[Gabriel is] the go-to trial consultant for high profile cases.”—Michael M. Baden, M.D. Former Chief Medical Examiner of New York City, Host of the HBO Autopsy Series and Author of Unnatural Death and Dead Reckoning
 
“Fascinating stories from inside the legal landmark cases of the last twenty years.  More than just a memoir or a journalistic account of these famous trials, Gabriel reveals the struggles, sorrows, twists and turns as prosecutors, defense attorneys, and high-profile defendants wage battle in court and on the public stage.”—Shawn Holley, celebrity attorney
 
Acquittal is the essential book for anyone who wants to truly understand the justice system today.”—Don Winslow, author of Savages and Kings of Cool
 
“Truth is stranger than fiction, especially in the courtroom…[Gabriel gives] us surprising and dramatic new revelations about cases that we thought we knew. Acquittal’s chapters are filled with real life legal thrillers.”—Michelle Ward, PhD, Producer and host of the Investigation Discovery series, Stalked: Someone’s Watching.
 
“Richard Gabriel doesn’t just take you inside the courtroom of the nation’s most watched trials, he takes you inside the minds of the players: their strategies and their moves. With explicit detail, Acquittal instantly captures your interest, presenting reality with the ease of the finest fiction novel. Except these cases were real and Gabriel lived them. While these are the cases we all followed on TV and the newspapers, we now get to step inside the inner sanctum for insights not previously available into our nation’s most notorious trials.”—Paul Lisnek, J.D., Ph.D, Author of The Hidden Jury and Art of Lawyering, political analyst on WGN-TV, and Host of Politics Tonight on CLTV

Meet the Author

Richard Gabriel is a trial consultant of 28 years who has worked on more than a thousand criminal and civil cases across the United States. He is the co-author of Jury Selection: Strategy and Science. A former President of the American Society of Trial Consultants and current President of the ASTC Foundation, he has appeared on CBS, ABC, NBC, CNN, HLN, Fox, MSNBC and NPR in more than 50 interviews on most of the high profile trials in the last 15 years.

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Acquittal: An Insider Reveals the Stories and Strategies Behind Today's Most Infamous Verdicts 2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book has some great stories and insight. Mr. Gabriel shared a lot of information about the Phil Spector trial that I did not know and even fresh insight into the OJ trial despite everything written about this already. Editing is uneven--a couple of chapters seem out of place.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
THE SIMPLE TRUTH - Murdering Mother Anthony got off because of 12 simple-minded people, as simple-minded as she is! BOYCOTT any and all books, tv shows, interviews, etc. on the Murdering Mother. Simple as that.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Why would anyone want to reads this crap? How to get murderers off !!!