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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 171160 Find in a Library
Title: Traditional Criminal Process
Author(s): A J Davis
Date Published: 1998
Page Count: 0
Sponsoring Agency: Bureau of Justice Assistance
Washington, DC 20531
Community Research Associates, Inc
Denver, CO 80206
US Dept of Justice
Washington, DC 20530
Contract Number: 95-DD-BX-K001
Sale Source: US Dept of Justice
Audiovisual Media Section
950 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Room 1311
Washington, DC 20530
United States of America
Type: Training (Aid/Material)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Using lecture and discussion interaction with participants, Angela Jordan Davis provides an overview of criminal processing, from arrest through sentencing, with attention to aspects of discretionary decision-making by police and prosecutors.
Abstract: The overview of policing notes that police are responsible for both preventing and detecting (investigating) crime. A discussion of probable-cause grounds for arrest reviews the definition of probable cause, followed by a discussion with participants regarding whether police should always arrest citizens for every violation when police believe there is probable cause. A discussion of the use of police discretion focuses on the police decision to make traffic stops apparently based on the race of the driver. Police legal limitations regarding arrests and searches are also addressed. An overview of the prosecutor's role advises that the prosecutor is the most powerful criminal justice official because of his/her discretion as to whether or not to dismiss a case, determine charges, engage in plea bargaining, use a diversion strategy, and proceed to trial. Various criteria used by prosecutors in various discretionary decisions are discussed as well. Whether or not prosecutors should take victims' views into account when making their decisions and the weight that should be given victims' views are also considered. Davis brings up the issue of how the affluence and social status of a defendant can impact prosecutorial decisions. Other topics discussed are the role and responsibilities of the grand jury; the use of bail and pretrial detention and how pretrial decisions may impact the outcome of a case; and trial procedures, including jury selection, jury decision-making, presentence investigations, and sentencing options.
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Arrest and apprehension; Criminal Justice System Response to Victims; Plea negotiations; Police discretion; Police legal limitations; Police responsibilities; Police-minority relations; Prosecutorial discretion; Prosecutorial diversion; Sentencing/Sanctions; Trial procedures
Note: Three color VHS videos, 2.5 hrs.
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