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Not GuiltyAre the Acquitted Innocent?$
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Daniel Givelber and Amy Farrell

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780814732175

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814732175.001.0001

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The Defense Case

The Defense Case

(p.99) 5 The Defense Case
Not Guilty

Daniel Givelber

Amy Farrell

NYU Press

This chapter analyzes how judges and juries responded to defendants' evidence as they determined guilt or innocence. One may as easily attribute the differing reactions when outside witnesses testify for the defendants to the contrasting views of reasonable doubt: through their counterstories, defendants plant doubts in the minds of unsophisticated jurors that experienced judges know to be unreasonable. The distinction between naïve jurors and experienced judges is intensified when defendants have no prior criminal records, a factor that is appealing to juries but does not move judges. These explanations serve to preserve the narrative that juries react emotionally, even irrationally, while judges adjudicate accurately. Thus, these findings confirm Kalven and Zeisel's liberation hypothesis.

Keywords:   defense cases, defense witnesses, reasonable doubt, criminal records, judge-jury disagreements, liberation hypothesis

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