The following decisions (located in Chapter 7 and Chapter 8 of your course textb

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The following decisions (located in Chapter 7 and Chapter 8 of your course textbook) will provide important summaries for the assignment:
Tumey v. Ohio, 273 U.S. 510 (1927);
Ward v. Village of Monroeville, 409 U.S. 57 (1972);
Dugan v. Ohio, 277 U.S. 61 (1928);
Baker v. Carr, 369 U.S. 186 (1962);
Morrill v. Jones, 106 U.S. 466 (1883);
Malley v. Lane, 97 Conn. 133 (1921);
People v. Wabash, St. Louis and Pacific Railway Co., 12 Ill. App. 263 (1883);
Wayte v. United States, 470 U.S. 598 (1985);
Burns v. Reed, 500 U.S. 478 (1991); and
Sheppard v. Maxwell, 384 U.S. 333 (1966).
Your essay must be at least three pages in length. All sources used, including the textbook, must be cited and referenced according to APA Style.
COURSE STUDY GUIDE NOTES
Judges and Prosecutors
Once someone is formally charged with a crime, perhaps the crime of verbally assaulting a puppy in public, a criminal trial ensues. That means it is off to court to resolve the situation. There will be several people involved with the court case. The accused, the defense attorney, the judge, the prosecuting attorney, the bailiff, maybe a jury, some miscellaneous court personnel, and some members of the public to observe will be involved. There is an interdependence between all of them. If any of them are missing, the court case does not proceed very well. Without a judge, there can be no rulings. Without a prosecutor, there can be no prosecution or plea deal. Without a jury there will be no deliberations. For this unit, we will focus on two of the participants: the judge and the prosecutor.
So, now you have been charged with verbally abusing your puppy in public, and it is off to court you go. There are numerous people you will encounter in the courtroom, and two of the important ones are the judge and the prosecutor. It might help your case if you knew something about each of them before and during the actual proceedings. So, let’s have a look at them.
Judge
For reasons we will not go into right now, you have decided to forgo a jury and proceed with a judge-only trial, also known as a bench trial. That means the judge will be both the trier of law as well as the trier of facts. As the trier of law, the judge will decide which laws and procedures will apply to your trial. The judge will decide what evidence is allowed and which questions the prosecutor can ask the witnesses. Perhaps the prosecutor will want you to testify, but if you do not want to, the judge will decide whether or not you must. Perhaps the judge will rule that you cannot be compelled to testify if you assert your right against self-incrimination, or maybe the judge will rule that you have waived that right somehow.As the trier, will also hear the evidence and decide your guilt or innocence, which is normally a jury function.
Federal Judge
If your trial will be heard in a federal court, a federal judge will be in charge. Although there are no actual qualifications for federal judges according to the U.S. Constitution or federal law, the judge will most likely be a former lawyer with a lot of experience and training (Siegel et al., 2018). The judge was nominated by the president at the time and confirmed by the Senate with input from the Justice Department and other interested groups. So, the judge has been thoroughly reviewed and screened. Perhaps the judge cares deeply about justice, fairness, and public service, so you most likely will receive a fair trial. The judge cannot be fired but can be impeached for really inappropriate behavior.
State Judge
If your trial will be heard in a state court, a state judge will be in charge. Unlike federal judges, there are specific requirements that need to be met before someone can become a state judge. Unlike federal judges, it is likely that your judge was required to have a law degree and some legal experience before accepting the job. Some judges are elected or face election after being appointed by the governor, so it is possible that you voted for the judge who will preside over your case, or maybe you voted against him or her. A state judge can be disciplined in several different ways if he or she behaves badly, so if the judge is biased against you or is disrespectful or otherwise unprofessional, he or she can be disciplined and maybe even removed from the bench (fired).
The Judge’s Decision
How do judges make their decisions about the cases brought before them? It would be great if the judge decided solely on the facts of the case as applied to the law, but those are not the only items the judge considers. Maybe that will be good for you; maybe it will not be good for you. It all depends on your particular facts and circumstances. Maybe he or she likes dogs, and that may sway his or her decision a bit. Or, maybe he or she likes cats, and that may sway the decision in a different direction. If the judge is coming up for reelection and he or she wants to appear tough on crime, he or she may lean that way. Maybe the judge is coming up for reelection and he or she wants to appear as someone who cares deeply about the rights of pet owners.
Perhaps the judge has seen public demonstrations about the law forbidding the verbal assault of a puppy in public. Some of the demonstrations were in support of the law, and some were against the law. There is a chance that the demonstrations may influence his or her decision. What if the judge thinks it was unwise for the legislature to enact the law that you are being charged under? Unfortunately for you, the judge cannot rule that the law was unwise. The law is the law, and judges are sworn to abide by it. However, what if the judge does not like you personally? Maybe you know the judge from some previous encounter. What if you are neighbors, were former friends, or go to college together, and now he or she thoroughly dislikes you? In that situation, the judge could decide to recuse himself or herself, or you could ask that the judge be recused.
Prosecutor
Now that we have some familiarity with the possible judge, we move on to the prosecutor. Prosecutors come in different types and titles. There are federal prosecutors as well as state prosecutors and city prosecutors. They have titles like attorney general, assistant attorney general, district attorney, city attorney, and others. Most likely, you will be facing a district attorney at your trial.
The woman who serves as your district attorney was elected. Maybe you voted for her or maybe not. She has the discretion to charge you or not. She has the discretion to offer you a plea bargain or not. It is normally in your best interest to not do anything that would make the district attorney unnecessarily mad at you. The same goes for your attorney. Although he or she can decide not to charge you, he or she is not allowed to charge you merely to be vindictive. Similar to judges, district attorneys base their decisions not only on the law and facts but on other considerations. Maybe he or she likes dogs or cats. Maybe he or she is coming up for reelection. Maybe he or she has seen public demonstrations about the law forbidding the insult of a puppy in public. She is allowed and might offer you some alternative to prosecution, such as pre-charge diversion, deferred prosecution diversion, sentencing diversion, post-incarceration divers, defer sentencing, or maybe even the Drug Treatment Alternative to Prison program. You or your attorney might be able to
convince him or her that since you are a college student, any prosecution that lands you in jail would not be justice. It might be better for all parties involved if you are not formally charged but receive one of the several other types of alternatives to trial instead.
There certainly can be situations where the prosecutor has crossed an ethical line and should be held accountable (e.g., if the district attorney does not disclose to your attorney that he or she has come across evidence that would exonerate you but instead hides it; if the district attorney carelessly talked to the press about your case; if the district attorney has already been hired by a private party who is going to sue you once you are incarcerated for verbally assaulting your puppy publicly [conflict of interest]). Any of these ethical lapses can get the prosecutor fired, disbarred, and have a conviction overturned.
Do you have any recourse if the district attorney charges you without good reason, vindictively, or by way of false evidence? You cannot sue him or her personally, but it could be reason enough to have your conviction overturned. Likely, you will not have to deal with that situation. Likely, the district attorney will remember that his or her key responsibility is to seek justice in all cases (including yours).
So, now we see that a jury is not always required, but a judge is and a prosecutor is as well. Without either one (judge and prosecutor), the court case does not happen. They are both necessary for the process. Depending on the jurisdiction, the judge may be a federal one or maybe a state one. In any event, the judge can act as a jury as well as a judge. The prosecutor, too, could work for the federal government or the state government and may be elected or appointed. Either way, their jobs are to seek justice in all cases. We have also seen that the decisions made by judges and prosecutors sometimes include more than only the law and facts of a particular case. Sometimes, it is also about elections, public outcry, or the personal beliefs of the judge or prosecutor.

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