Friday, December 22, 2017
For those few people out there who have an interest in the law review publishing process, check out my recently published article titled, appropriately enough, Law Review Publishing: Thoughts on Mass Submissions, Expedited Review, and Potential Reform, 16 U. New Hampshire L. Rev. 147 (2017).
Responding to more criticisms of the empirical studies on Wisconsin’s reasonable-doubt jury instruction
Prosecutors insist that
jury instruction 140 on the burden of proof — which concludes by telling jurors
“not to search for doubt” but “to search for the truth” — does not lower
the burden of proof. This raises the question:
If it doesn’t lower the burden of proof, then why are you fighting so
vigorously to preserve the offending closing mandate? Why not just join the other 49 states that
don’t use such qualifying language when instructing their juries on reasonable
In 2016 Lawrence T. White and I conducted two controlled studies on
Wisconsin’s burden of
proof jury instruction. Our findings
were published in articles here and here.
Not surprisingly, when you tell participants the
state’s burden is “beyond a reasonable doubt,” but then tell them “not to
search for doubt” and instead “to search for the truth,” you are lowering the burden of proof.
After a long hiatus to write another book, edit some articles, and attend to an unproductive personal “frolic,” I’m now resuming my posts at The Dog — with Knightly’s assistance, of course.
Sign up for new posts via email on the right hand side of the blog (web version) or check out The Dog on twitter to keep up with new posts.