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March 12, 2021

Wonderful new Federal Sentencing Reporter issue explores "Weinstein on Sentencing"

M_fsr.2021.33.3.coverI am so very pleased to report on the publication of the latest issue of the Federal Sentening Reporter.  This issue is titled "Weinstein on Sentencing" and it celebrates the many contributions to federal sentencing law, policy and practice by legendary EDNY Judge Jack Weinstein.

FSR was quite fortunate to get two of Judge Weinstein's former clerks, Carolin Guentert and Ryan Gerber, to organize this great new issue.  They did a wonderful job gathering an array of perspectives in an issue that includes a considerable number of original articles under the heading "Celebrating Judge Weinstein" as well as excerpts from Judge Weinstein's past opinions and articles under the heading "Weinstein In His Own Words." 

I highly encourage everyone to check out this full FSR issue, and here is a list of the original articles:

Guest Editors’ Observations: Judge Weinstein's Contributions to Sentencing Law by Carolin E. Guentert & Ryan H. Gerber

Weinstein on Sentencing by Kate Stith

Jack B. Weinstein Up Close by John Gleeson

Jack Weinstein: Reimagining the Role of the District Court Judge by Jessica A. Roth

Serving a Rehabilitative Goal: Assessing Judge Jack B. Weinstein’s Supervised Release Jurisprudence by Christine S. Scott-Hayward

A Judge’s Attempt at Sentencing Consistency After Booker: Judge Jack B. Weinstein’s Guidelines for Sentencing by Carolin E. Guentert & Ryan H. Gerber

Hanging Up the Robe by Thomas Ward Frampton

Sentencing with Love, Not Hate by Deirdre D. von Dornum

March 12, 2021 at 09:27 AM | Permalink


My favorite Jack Weinstein opinion was one suppressing evidence of a pistol found on a New York felon. The police had said that their probable cause to search the (black) man was that he had a utility knife clipped to his pocket. The police argued that the utility knife was a concealed deadly weapon. Judge Weinstein and his law clerk called Home Depot and learned that they had sold tens of thousands of those utility knives in the prior year or two. These are the kinds of utility knives commonly owned and used by construction workers, for a variety of tasks, including cutting carpet and screens, among many tasks. Judge Weinstein used his own commonsense research to find that the utility knife clipped to the man's pocket was not a dangerous weapon, but a common tool carried every day for legitimate uses by construction workers. Thus, he found no probable cause for the police to have stopped the defendant (who turned out to be a felon carrying a pistol) and searched him. He suppressed the pistol evidence as being obtained in violation of the Fourth Amendment. He analogized the utility knives to cell phones. Drug dealers carry and use cell phones to arrange drug deals, but that doesn't mean that the police can stop and frisk everyone carrying a cell phone. He analysis amounted to brilliant common sense and fairness.

Posted by: Jim Gormley | Mar 12, 2021 2:00:00 PM

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