In 2016, 97.3% of defendants in the federal criminal justice system conceded guilt. This means that less than 3% of defendants exercised their constitutional right to trial. The vast majority of a criminal defense attorney's time is dedicated to plea bargaining - we negotiate with prosecutors to reach an acceptable outcome for clients. Plea negotiations are an important tool for defendants. However, when a defendant wishes to go to trial, is he or she punished for doing so?
In The Justice System, the federal government recently announced that it will be adding approximately 300 Assistant United States Attorneys (AUSAs) nationwide. This increase marks the largest in decades. The government intends to increase resources to combat violent crime, enforce immigration laws, and help address the devastating opioid crisis.
The Justice System is changing. Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a memo to federal prosecutors last month implementing a new approach as they evaluate what crimes to charge and sentences to pursue. Although ultimate sentencing discretion remains with the Court, the government's position has an impact.
Technology is changing the relationship between the police & you. As mobile devices become more advanced, so do the ways police can track you. Recently, the Sixth Circuit Federal Court of Appeals ruled that law enforcement officials can use cell phone data, specifically GPS information, to track and locate people without a warrant.