Monday, November 23, 2015
Peter A. Joy and Kevin C. McMunigal (Washington University in Saint Louis - School of Law and Case Western Reserve University School of Law) have posted Innocent Defendants Pleading Guilty (30 Crim. Just. 45 (Spring 2015)) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:
United States District Judge Jed Rakoff recently wrote an interesting and timely article in the New York Review of Books highlighting the risk of innocent defendants pleading guilty and offering a proposal aimed at reducing this risk. (Jed S. Rakoff, Why Innocent People Plead Guilty, N.Y. REV. BOOKS, NOV. 20, 2014). Judge Rakoff recommends changing the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure to allow federal magistrate judges to participate in plea negotiations early in criminal cases just as they now participate in settlement negotiations in civil cases. In this column we examine the reasons why we share Judge Rakoff’s concern and offer an assessment of his proposal.