CrimProf Blog

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

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Blume & Stetler on Mitigation

John H. Blume III and Russell Stetler (Cornell Law School and Office of the Federal Public Defender, Oakland) has posted Mitigation Matters (Tell the Client's Story: Mitigation in Criminal and Death Penalty Cases (Edward Monahan & James Clark, editors; American Bar Association), 2017) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:
Mitigation matters. It works. It literally saves lives every day, often in cases in which a death sentence seems a foregone conclusion. But mitigation matters — it works — only if the capital defense team is committed both to conducting a comprehensive investigation of the client’s life and to developing and integrating the results of the investigation into a compelling, credible narrative for life. This commitment to uncovering and telling the client’s true story must be complete and unwavering. When it is, life sentences follow. When it is not, undeserved death sentences are imposed.

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