Plea Bargaining Cases

Topics: Supreme Court of the United States, Jury, United States Pages: 7 (1514 words) Published: April 17, 2017


Introduction

Plea bargaining is the process by which an agreement between the prosecutor and the defendant where the defendant pleads guilty to a lesser charge in the expectation of leniency. On February 7th, 1881 the first plea bargain was used in a trial by Albert McKenzie in the state of California (“Plea bargaining gains favor in American courts”). After the first use of a plea bargain in a 30 year span in Alameda County, “nearly 10 percent of defendants changed their “not guilty” pleas to “guilty of lesser charge” or plead guilty to reduced charges (“Plea bargaining gains favor in American courts”).” Soon plea bargaining spread throughout the entire United States becoming popular for most defendants. Alschuler (1979) found that over...

With plea bargaining’s cases go through the court system much faster without needing jury’s and multiple court appearances. When the evidence is stacked against a defendant they can use a plea bargaining and plead guilty and get less time and therefore will not waste court time when the verdict will be guilty either way. Plea bargaining is what keeps the court system flowing and without it cases would takes month on end to be heard. Plea bargaining’s is a most for the United States court system.


Opposing Views of Plea Bargaining
The United States court system has become dependent on processing serious crime through plea bargains. People believe that plea bargaining should be abolished because it does not provide rightful justice. Schulhofer (1992) says “plea bargaining seriously impairs the public interest in effective punishment of crime and in accurate separation of the guilty from innocent (p. 1979).” This is because plea bargaining lighten charges that if they went to court they would get much firmer punishment. Plea bargains have also been taken by innocent people due to the fear of being convicted and serving a longer sentence. Some lawyers will pressure their clients into...

The United States court system runs smoothly due to plea bargaining because they push cases through without trial. Trials can take weeks and even months before they have a verdict. With ninety percent of cases being plea bargained it keeps court cases moving along. The United States court system is like a conveyer belt and plea bargaining is what keeps the conveyer belt moving so thing do not get backed up. Plea bargaining also benefits defendants by giving them a choice to plead guilty and take a lesser charge by giving up their right to a trial (Alschuler, 1968, p. 4). For those who the evidence clearly shows they are guilty they can chose a plea bargaining and get less time without wasting the court's time. Defendants who have families they need to support and are guilty of a crime can take a plea bargaining and can serve less time so they can get back to supporting their families sooner. Individuals can also give up their right to a trial by their peers in exchange for a guilty plea of a less serious offense or lesser charges making their criminal record better. They are minor first offenses where people can go without hiring a lawyer and instead accept a plea bargain and avoid going trial and paying for a lawyer. Many people make mistakes early in their life and plea bargains give those people a chance to reduce time served or charges by admitting to what they...
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