A blog by Miami Criminal Defense Lawyer Brian Tannebaum. Commenting on criminal law issues of local and national interest.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

The American Definition of Justice: A Guilty Verdict

When a defendant is found "not guilty," the first thing moronic pundits and reporters like to say is that there is "still no justice" in the case.

I'm sorry, I thought justice was served when jurors deliberated evidence and came to a verdict, whether that verdict is guilty or not guilty.

But that's not true, and the harsh truth is that most of us do not believe that "justice" has been done unless that justice includes a guilty verdict.

I can understand that the family of a victim believes there is no justice for them when a trial ends and the defendant is adjudged not guilty, but is there not justice for the defendant on trial? Is it not justice that a jury of her peers determined that the government did not prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt?

No.

Why?

Because we expect jurors to find people GUILTY! We may say we believe in the presumption of innocence but did you know that 80% of all jurors that appear for jury duty are pre-disposed to guilt?

That's the way we like it though.

Isn't it?

Isn't that justice?

4 comments:

  1. Anonymous9:02 PM

    what happened you spoke too much truth about the judges and they called you outraged? is that why you took it off your website? too bad and dont let them intimidate

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  2. Anonymous7:25 PM

    were you excommunicated? did some judge threaten a client of your becuase you spoke the truth about the 11th judicial circuits finest? please let us know why you withdrew that post about the homeless beggars?

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  3. Unfortunately the general public is more influenced by yellow journalism and sensationalism rather than facts and proof. Anyone who has watched American Justice on A&E knows that sometimes the police coerce innocent people into making confessions of guilt. I wonder just what the percentage of convictions of innocent people is in this country? It is sad that most people are out to hang the guilty and remain unconcerned about the rights of the accused who just might be innocent after all?

    Thanks for posting your thoughts. By the way, I worked as a prison chaplain at North Florida Reception Center, Florida Department of Corrections, Lake Butler, Florida for about 4 years. I can tell you that there are lots of abuses that go on in jails and prisons in this country. What about human rights?

    Charlie

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