Our report on "The Trial Penalty," released in 2018, found that over the last 50 years, defendants chose trial in less than three percent of state and federal criminal cases—compared to 30 years ago when 20 percent of those arrested chose trial. The remaining 97 percent of cases were resolved through plea deals.

There is ample evidence that federal criminal defendants are being coerced to plead guilty because the penalty for exercising their constitutional rights is simply too high to risk.

Find case-based tools and more information on pleas here.