Paul Tappan Award Winner Keynote Address: The Justice Gap and the Promise of Criminological Research

15 Criminology, Criminal Justice, Law & Society 1 (2014)

Univ. of San Francisco Law Research Paper No. 2015-04

38 Pages Posted: 9 Dec 2014 Last revised: 11 Feb 2015

See all articles by Richard A. Leo

Richard A. Leo

University of San Francisco - School of Law

Date Written: 2014

Abstract

This essay discusses the justice gap in the criminal justice system -- the difference between the promise of justice inherent in our formally democratic, legal institutions and the actual delivery of justice within these institutions. The author argues that criminologists are in a unique position to expose and study the justice gap in the American legal system by bringing methodologically rigorous empirical research skills and data-driven knowledge to bear on these problems. The essay details how empirical research has been instrumental in developing best practices to prevent wrongful convictions by improving the criminal justice system’s reliability. The author describes several justice gaps in the American criminal justice system and traces the history of empirical scholarship in American police interrogation, false confessions, and wrongful convictions over the last two decades.

Keywords: justice, criminology, criminal law, criminal procedure, police interrogation, false confession, wrongful conviction

Suggested Citation

Leo, Richard A., Paul Tappan Award Winner Keynote Address: The Justice Gap and the Promise of Criminological Research (2014). 15 Criminology, Criminal Justice, Law & Society 1 (2014); Univ. of San Francisco Law Research Paper No. 2015-04. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2535450

Richard A. Leo (Contact Author)

University of San Francisco - School of Law ( email )

2130 Fulton Street
San Francisco, CA 94117
United States

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
89
Abstract Views
920
rank
296,517
PlumX Metrics