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Criminal Courts
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Criminal Courts
A Contemporary Perspective

Fourth Edition
Additional resources:


February 2019 | 456 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

Written by three nationally recognized experts in the field, Criminal Courts: A Contemporary Perspective explores all the fundamental topics (court structure, courtroom actors, and the trial and appeals process) as well as other ground-breaking topics, such as specialty courts and comparative court systems. This bestseller provides students with a foundation for understanding key concepts by reviewing the judicial function, the role and purpose of law, sources of law, the various types of law, and the American court system’s structure and operations. Students build on this foundation by learning about participants in the system and the pretrial, trial, and post-trial processes. 

Packed with contemporary examples and new pedagogical tools, the Fourth Edition has been thoroughly revised with the most up-to-date content and resources to give students a more comprehensive understanding of the criminal courts system.

Give your students the SAGE edge!
SAGE edge offers a robust online environment featuring an impressive array of free tools and resources for review, study, and further exploration, keeping both instructors and students on the cutting edge of teaching and learning. Learn more at edge.sagepub.com/hemmens4e.

 
Preface
 
Acknowledgments
 
About the Authors
 
SECTION I: The Purpose and Structure of American Courts
 
CHAPTER 1: Introduction: Law and the Judicial Function
Why Study Courts?

 
What Is Law?

 
The Code of Hammurabi

 
Two Opposing Perspectives: Consensus and Conflict

 
What Is the Relationship of Law to Justice?

 
The Rule of Law

 
Justice, the Law, and Packer’s Models of Criminal Justice

 
Two Models of Criminal Justice

 
Judicial Functions

 
How Judges “Make Law”

 
Development of the Common-Law System

 
The Role of Courts in the Criminal Justice System

 
 
CHAPTER 2: Sources of Law
Sources of Law

 
Sources of Individual Rights

 
Standard of Review

 
Incorporation of the Bill of Rights Into the Fourteenth Amendment

 
 
CHAPTER 3: Types of Law
Types of Law: Criminal and Civil

 
 
CHAPTER 4: Court Organization and Structure
Jurisdiction

 
The Structure and Jurisdiction of U.S. Courts

 
A Brief Historical Overview

 
Federal Courts

 
State Courts

 
Court Actors

 
Overview of the Criminal Process

 
 
SECTION II: Courtroom Actors and the Courtroom Workgroup
 
CHAPTER 5: Prosecutors
Historical Evolution of the American Prosecutor

 
The Federal Prosecutor

 
State Prosecutors

 
The Prosecutor’s Duties

 
Assistant Prosecutors at Work

 
The Expansion of the Prosecutor’s Discretionary Power

 
Prosecutorial Ethics and Misconduct

 
Community Prosecution

 
 
CHAPTER 6: Defense Attorneys
Defense Attorney’s Role in the Criminal Justice System

 
Historical Development of the Right to Counsel

 
Indigent Defense Systems

 
Private Versus Appointed Counsel: Which Is Better?

 
Effective Assistance of Counsel

 
Ethics and Lawyer–Client Relationships

 
Realities of Being a Defense Attorney

 
 
CHAPTER 7: Judges
Roles and Duties of Judges

 
Judicial Selection

 
Judicial Socialization and Development

 
Judicial Accountability and Judicial Independence

 
Judicial Performance Evaluations

 
Accountability for Judicial Misconduct

 
 
CHAPTER 8: Criminal Defendants and Crime Victims
Criminal Defendants

 
Victims and the Criminal Courts

 
 
CHAPTER 9: The Jury
History of Jury Trials

 
The Role of the Jury

 
Limits on the Right to Trial by Jury

 
Jury Size and Unanimity Requirements

 
The Selection of Jurors

 
Reforms to the Jury System

 
Jury Nullification

 
 
SECTION III: Court Processes
 
CHAPTER 10: Pretrial Procedures
Arrest

 
Booking

 
The Charging Decision

 
Information

 
Indictment

 
Initial Appearance

 
Arraignment

 
Discovery

 
Pretrial Motions

 
Plea Bargaining

 
Jury Selection

 
 
CHAPTER 11: The Criminal Trial
Opening Statements

 
The Presentation of Evidence

 
Calling Witnesses

 
Evidence and Rules of Evidence

 
Closing Arguments

 
Instructing the Jury

 
Jury Deliberations and Verdict

 
Wrongful Conviction and Exoneration of the Innocent

 
 
CHAPTER 12: Sentencing
The Goals of Sentencing

 
The Judge’s Options at Sentencing

 
How Do Judges Decide? Modeling the Sentencing Process

 
 
CHAPTER 13: The Appellate Process
Appealing to a Higher Court

 
The Appellate Courts

 
The “Right” to Appeal

 
The Writ of Habeas Corpus

 
How Do Appellate Courts Decide?

 
 
CHAPTER 14: Specialized Courts
Problem-Solving Courts

 
Drug Treatment Courts

 
Domestic Violence Courts

 
Other Problem-Solving Courts

 
Juvenile Courts

 
 
Glossary
 
References and Suggested Reading
 
Case Index
 
General Index

Supplements

Student Study Site

SAGE edge for students enhances learning, is easy to use, and offers:

  • an open-access site that makes it easy for students to maximize their study time, anywhere, anytime;
  • eFlashcards that strengthen understanding of key terms and concepts;
  • eQuizzes that allow students to practice and assess how much they’ve learned and where they need to focus their attention;
  • carefully selected video and multimedia links that enhance classroom-based exploration of key topics; and
  • exclusive access to influential SAGE journal and reference content that ties important research and scholarship to chapter concepts to strengthen learning.
Instructor Resource Site

SAGE edge for instructors supports your teaching by making it easy to integrate quality content and create a rich learning environment for students with:

  • a password-protected site for complete and protected access to all text-specific instructor resources; 
  • test banks that provide a diverse range of ready-to-use options that save you time. You can also easily edit any question and/or insert your own personalized questions;
  • editable, chapter-specific PowerPoint® slides that offer complete flexibility for creating a multimedia presentation for your course;
  • exclusive access to influential full-text SAGE journal articles, which have been carefully selected to tie important research and scholarship to chapter concepts;
  • lecture notes that summarize key concepts by chapter to help you prepare for lectures and class discussions; and
  • a course cartridge for easy LMS integration.

“Straightforward, easy for students to understand, and spotlights all the critical stages in the criminal justice process timeline.”

Barbara B. Koehler
Metropolitan State University of Denver

“This is a great lower-level text for a court process class that offers a well-rounded introduction to the court process, structure, and relevant issues today. It is also priced well compared to other notable texts in the market.”

Danielle M. Romain
University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee

“Very informative text written by well-respected names. Covers all of the expected content in a criminal courts text in a way that engages students.”

Elizabeth B. Perkins
Morehead State University

A very well done book on criminal courts—one that rivals the other texts that may be commonly used. I like many of the features: it is easy to follow, has great interface, and is up-to-date, including a lot of newer information.”

Ross Allen
Rutgers University-Camden

[Criminal Courts] does a better job of covering the subject matter of an introductory course on law and torts. It does not overwhelm students with lists of cases. It provides specific information in each chapter in the form of boxes that present additional information in a concise and direct manner. Topics include comparative courts, examination of current controversies, movies and courts, and a view of the court system from participants.”

Raymond L. Hasselman
Northeastern State University