Decisions symptomatic of ill-advised direction of justice system
Washington DC (March 5, 2003) -- In response to two decisions each in cases addressing Megan’s laws and three-strikes laws by the U.S. Supreme Court today, Lawrence Goldman, president of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, issued the following statement:
“Today’s Supreme Court decisions reinforce the unhealthy abandonment of rehabilitation as a goal of the criminal justice system. By rubber-stamping the harsh dictates of politically-motivated state legislatures, the Court has upheld life punishments, although of different types, for individuals who have successfully completed their prison terms for sex-related crimes, as in the two Megan’s Law cases, or who have been convicted of only relatively minor crimes, as in the three-strikes cases.
“If we are going to discard the hope for rehabilitation, we should do so explicitly, and rename every state ‘department of corrections’ the ‘department of punishment.’
“A majority of the Supreme Court appears to have forgotten that the Constitution was adopted to protect individuals from the excesses of the state. By its decisions, the Court minimizes the role of the Constitution and indeed its own role as the ultimate protector of our rights.”
Goldman is a criminal defense lawyer in New York City. He can be reached at (212) 997-7499.
Cross-Examination Trial Pack
NACDL’s new Cross-Examination Trial Pack includes three of our best-selling Cross-Examination resources: “Damage Control: Situational Cross-Examination Techniques Trial Guide”, "Ultimate Cross 2.0: Audio Recordings & Written Materials" and "Sample Cross-Examination Questions."
This masterful collection of cross-examination resources provide countless tips, techniques and strategies for a variety of criminal case-specific scenarios. Learn to cross-examine a variety of trial witnesses!
Death Investigation: Forensic Pathology in the Courtroom and Cause & Manner of Death (2022)
This unique program provides criminal defense lawyers with an accurate and clear overview of forensic pathology and the countless factors to consider in a death investigation and will methodically explain what happens during an autopsy to determine cause and manner of death.
You'll uncover the different types of medicolegal death investigations, what to request from your MDI expert, quality benchmarks for accreditation and certification, guidelines and standards, common terminology and frequently asked questions.
The Psychology of Persuasion & Storytelling for Criminal Defense Lawyers
This Trial Resource Guide is a masterful collection of practical tips, techniques and strategies focused solely on using the arts and sciences of persuasion to improve your storytelling skills at trial.
You'll learn how to master the ability to communicate with juries, deliver powerful openings and closings, perform convincing cross-examinations, use effective courtroom choreography and non-verbal communication, identify and develop the optimal theme and theory for your case, and offer compelling arguments during mitigation and sentencing.
Zealous Advocacy in Sexual Assault & Child Victims Cases (2022)
Defending charges of sexual assault and child abuse can be daunting — but with the right tools, it doesn’t have to be.
Every year, NACDL identifies the hottest topics and most pressing issues when defending these cases, and brings-in nationally-renowned lawyers and experts to help you prepare for battle. This year’s 13th Annual Defending Sex Cases training program is our best yet; packed with topics and speakers you won’t want to miss!
NACDL Communications Department
The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is the preeminent organization advancing the mission of the criminal defense bar to ensure justice and due process for persons accused of crime or wrongdoing. A professional bar association founded in 1958, NACDL's many thousands of direct members in 28 countries – and 90 state, provincial and local affiliate organizations totaling up to 40,000 attorneys – include private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness and promoting a rational and humane criminal legal system.