Chapter 10 notes

Chapter 10 notes - C hapter 10 Courts and the J udicia ry Overcrowding and underfunding hurting court system o Causes the poor to stay detained in

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Chapter 10 – Courts and the Judiciary - Overcrowding and underfunding hurting court system o Causes the poor to stay detained in prison while the wealthier go free on bail - Very underbudgeted, having to offer non-judicial alternatives like diversion instead of a formal trial - Overloaded court dockets given rise to “ assembly-line justice ” where majority of defendants are induced to plead guilty, jury trials are rare and speedy trials are highly desired Plea negotiations/Plea bargaining – discussions between defense and counsel and prosecution in which the accused agrees to plead guilty in exchange for things like reduced charges or a lenient sentence State court systems - each state has its own court system - There are 50 state trial and appellate systems w/separate courts for DC, Puerto Rico, etc. - States are free to name courts what they want, have however many they want, establish specialized courts that only handle one matter (like drug courts) etc. - Huge diversity in court organization among states Courts of limited jurisdiction – generic term referring to a court that has jurisdiction limited to minor or less serious civil and criminal cases o Municipal, county, district courts, etc. o Restricted # of cases they can hear o Civil suits where damages are 1000$ or less o Criminal suits like shoplifting, simple assault, disorderly conduct
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Fines, community service, county jail for up to a hear o Conduct arraignments, preliminary hearings, and bail hearings before transferred to higher courts o Specialized courts – focus on treatment and care for those special needs offenders Family or juvenile court, custody cases, issues involving children o 13,500 total courts of limited jurisdiction, makes up 90% of court system Courts of general jurisdiction – state or federal court that has jurisdiction over felony offenses – serious crimes that have penalties of incarceration in prison for a year or more o 2000 courts o Murder, rape, robbery, etc. o Organized in districts or circuits o Appellate courts – court where appeals of case are made from lower court, to evaluate if case was decided properly Each state has at least 1 Criminal appeals only ¼ of total appeals Summary… most states have at least 2 trial and 2 appellate courts, but differ about jurisdiction. Matters vary from state to state State court structure: - Each state court system is different - Common state courts include limited jurisdiction courts, general jurisdiction courts, and appellate courts - Each state has at least one court of last resort, usually called a state supreme court - Many states have implemented specialized limited jurisdiction courts: including drug, domestic violence, mental health courts, etc. Difference between limited and general jurisdiction
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This note was uploaded on 12/15/2010 for the course CRJU 20413 taught by Professor Price during the Fall '07 term at TCU.

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Chapter 10 notes - C hapter 10 Courts and the J udicia ry Overcrowding and underfunding hurting court system o Causes the poor to stay detained in

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