Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1016148
 
 

Footnotes (31)



 


 



Prior Good Works in the Age of Reasonableness


Peter J. Henning


Wayne State University Law School


Federal Sentencing Reporter, Vol. 20, No. 3, 2008
Wayne State University Law School Research Paper No. 07-30

Abstract:     
The Supreme Court's decision in United States v. Booker allows federal judges a bit more discretion in sentencing, and greater discretion in sentencing likely means less predictability in individual cases if the background of the person being sentenced takes on a larger role in assessing the appropriate punishment. One area that may become more prominent in sentencing in white collar crime cases is a defendant's prior good works, which the Federal Sentencing Guidelines discourage as a sentencing factor but judges in the post-Booker age of reasonableness may pay greater attention to in their sentencing decisions. The President's recent commutation of the sentence of I. Lewis Scooter Libby, based in part on his valuable government service, will only increase the likelihood that prior good works will be an important ground for seeking a reduced sentence.

With greater discretion comes the potential for disparity, and in this Article I offer three rules of thumb for trial courts, and appellate courts reviewing the reasonableness of a punishment, to keep in mind when considering whether a defendant's prior good works should be a factor in the sentence. The three rules are: (1) Money matters; (2) Beware the corporate chieftain; and (3) Elected officials violating the public trust should not receive credit for good works.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 7

Keywords: Sentencing, Criminal Law

JEL Classification: k14, k42

working papers series


Download This Paper

Date posted: September 24, 2007 ; Last revised: May 1, 2008

Suggested Citation

Henning, Peter J., Prior Good Works in the Age of Reasonableness. Federal Sentencing Reporter, Vol. 20, No. 3, 2008; Wayne State University Law School Research Paper No. 07-30. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1016148 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1016148

Contact Information

Peter J. Henning (Contact Author)
Wayne State University Law School ( email )
471 West Palmer Ave.
Detroit, MI 48202
United States

Feedback to SSRN


Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 771
Downloads: 109
Download Rank: 146,413
Footnotes:  31

© 2014 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo5 in 0.250 seconds