CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Monday, February 11, 2013

Goelzhauser on Budget Allocations and Local Death Charging Decisions

Greg Goelzhauser (Utah State University - Department of Political Science) has posted Prosecutorial Discretion under Resource Constraints: Budget Allocations and Local Death Charging Decisions (Judicature, Forthcoming) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

Do prosecutorial resource constraints influence death-charging decisions? Prosecutors typically contend that death-charging decisions are made independent of budget considerations, and the limited empirical evidence supports this view. Using new data on death-charging decisions from 301 prosecutorial districts across 34 states, the results presented here suggest that the conventional wisdom is wrong. The probability of facing a death charge is higher in prosecutorial districts with larger budgets. The results inform our understanding of the politics of prosecutorial behavior and the policy debate over capital punishment.

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