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January 5, 2007

In praise of student sentencing scholarship

One joy of specializing in sentencing law and policy is that law students can (and often will) effectively cover important issues in notes and other student scholarship.  A good example comes from the latest Columbia Law Review, where this note is addresses "Advisory Sentencing and the Federalization of Crime: Should Federal Sentencing Judges Consider the Disparity Between State and Federal Sentencing Under Booker?" 

This CLR note on Booker is not yet on-line, but in the meantime I recommend everyone make sure they've read this student note from April's Harvard Law Review entitled "A Matter of Life and Death: The Effect of Life-Without-Parole Statutes on Capital Punishment."  In our debate over the New Jersey death penalty report (highlights here and here), Karl Keys reminded me of this piece; a re-read confirmed my recollection that it is a strong and important work.

I encourage law students to keep picking sentencing topics for their scholarship; there so many issues that merit attention that few established scholars are exploring.  And, of course, I also encourage students to send me their efforts for highlighting here.

January 5, 2007 at 09:06 AM | Permalink


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Is the author including 3-strikes regimes in LWOP systems? If so, the conclusion seems flawed:

while the death row population grew by 31%, the population of those incarcerated for life without parole grew by 170%. It is clear that life without parole’s purpose of offering an alternative to the death penalty, has far outstripped its proponents’ goal.

Note at 15.

Posted by: anon | Jan 5, 2007 2:02:34 PM

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