Lies Behind Bars: An Analysis of the Problematic Reliance on Jailhouse Informant Testimony in the Criminal Justice System and a Texas-Sized Attempt to Address the Issue

The advent of DNA technology in the late 1980s led to a wave of exonerations in the United States, shedding light on major problems with the U.S. criminal justice system. Many of these wrongful convictions were traced back to criminal informants, colloquially referred to as “snitches,” who provided incriminating testimony in exchange for a sentenceContinue reading “Lies Behind Bars: An Analysis of the Problematic Reliance on Jailhouse Informant Testimony in the Criminal Justice System and a Texas-Sized Attempt to Address the Issue”

Constraining the Statutory President

When agencies make decisions that are binding on the public, they must provide public notice, accept and consider public comments, and provide explanations for their final decisions. Their actions are then subject to judicial review to ensure that they acted within the scope of their authority and the decision was not arbitrary or capricious. TheContinue reading “Constraining the Statutory President”

Payday

Legislation lags behind technology all too often. While trillions of dollars are exchanged in online transactions—safely, cheaply, and instantaneously—workers still must wait two weeks to a month to receive payments from their employers. In the modern economy, workers are effectively lending money to their employers, as they wait for earned wages to be paid. The sameContinue reading “Payday”

Justice by Luck: How Unclear Records Force Some Unlucky Prisoners to Serve Unconstitutional Sentences in the Wake of Johnson v. United States

The Armed Career Criminal Act (ACCA) imposes mandatory minimum sentences on individuals convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm who have at least three prior convictions for “violent felon[ies].” “Violent felon[ies]” include those crimes contemplated by the ACCA’s “residual clause.” The Supreme Court ruled that the residual clause was unconstitutional in JohnsonContinue reading “Justice by Luck: How Unclear Records Force Some Unlucky Prisoners to Serve Unconstitutional Sentences in the Wake of Johnson v. United States”

Compassionate Homicide

Ample psychological studies demonstrate that emotions provide reasons for action and are powerful drivers of a host of behaviors, including criminal acts. Studies further establish that experiencing intense emotions might impair actors’ judgment and decision-making, sometimes culminating in committing homicide. Existing criminal law doctrines only partially correspond to these findings. They recognize mostly anger and fearContinue reading “Compassionate Homicide”