Trials Without Truthby William T. Pizzi
Pub. Date: 06/01/2000
Publisher: New York University Press
Reginald Denny. O. J. Simpson. Colin Ferguson. Louise Woodward: all names that have cast a spotlight on the deficiencies of the American system of criminal justice. Yet, in the wake of each trial that exposes shocking behavior by trial participants or results in counterintuitive rulings—often with perverse results—the American public is reassured by… See more details below
Reginald Denny. O. J. Simpson. Colin Ferguson. Louise Woodward: all names that have cast a spotlight on the deficiencies of the American system of criminal justice. Yet, in the wake of each trial that exposes shocking behavior by trial participants or results in counterintuitive rulings—often with perverse results—the American public is reassured by the trial bar that the case is not "typical" and that our trial system remains the best in the world.
William T. Pizzi here argues that what the public perceives is in fact exactly what the United States has: a trial system that places far too much emphasis on winning and not nearly enough on truth, one in which the abilities of a lawyer or the composition of a jury may be far more important to the outcome of a case than any evidence.
How has a system on which Americans have lavished enormous amounts of energy, time, and money been allowed to degenerate into one so profoundly flawed?
Acting as an informal tour guide, and bringing to bear his experiences as both insider and outsider, prosecutor and academic, Pizzi here exposes the structural faultlines of our trial system and its paralyzing obsession with procedure, specifically the ways in which lawyers are permitted to dominate trials, the system's preference for weak judges, and the absurdities of plea bargaining. By comparing and contrasting the U.S. system with that of a host of other countries, Trials Without Truth provides a clear-headed, wide-ranging critique of what ails the criminal justice system—and a prescription for how it can be fixed.
- New York University Press
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- New Edition
- Product dimensions:
- 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 6.00(d)
Table of Contents
|1||Soccer, Football, and Trial Systems||5|
|2||Technicalities and Truth: The Exclusionary Rule||25|
|3||Truth and the Amount of Evidence Available at Trial||46|
|4||A Trial System in Trouble||69|
|5||Discovering Who We Are: A Look at Four Different Trial Systems||89|
|6||Criminal Trials in the United States: Trials without Truth||117|
|7||Trials without Truth: Weak Trial Judges||140|
|8||The Supreme Court: An Institutional Failure||154|
|9||A Weak Trial System: Who Benefits?||183|
|10||Juries: The Loss of Public Confidence||200|
|11||Starting Down the Path to Reform||221|
|About the Author||257|
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