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Articles by Casey Bastian

Aversion to Error: Americans View Wrongful Acquittals and Wrongful Convictions to Be Errors of Equal Magnitude

by Casey J. Bastian

As we evolve our systems of criminaljustice, it becomes apparent that we must first agree what constitutes “justice.” And when we focus on what is justice within the criminal procedures for adjudicating guilt, an old maxim is frequently cited by many people — it is “better ...

Drones Gaining Popularity as a Law Enforcement Tool

by Casey J. Bastian

Police departments across the U.S. have been increasingly reliant on drones for a variety of law enforcement duties. The Huntsville Police Department (“HPD”) in Alabama has seen a 300 percent year-over-year increase in drone usage since 2017. The HPD drone program has been hailed as a ...

The Blue Wall of Silence: Law Enforcement Whistleblowers Face Severe Retaliation

by Casey J. Bastian

Many Americans have heard the term “whistleblower.” Someone who is willing to reveal something covert or corrupt or who informs against another. Ostensibly lauded, such people willing to take a principled stand frequently face tremendous retribution from those being exposed. In one profession in particular, being ...

How Many Federal Crimes Are There?

Nobody Knows for Sure

by Casey J. Bastian

If you were asked to identify the exact number of acts that are considered a federal “crime” in the U.S., could you do it? The answer is almost certainly no. No one, not even the federal government itself, knows the answer. Shockingly, ...

Law Enforcement Refuse to Admit Most Forensic Science Is Junk Science

by Casey J. Bastian

In modern America, the idea of forensic “science” being infallible has nearly made it a form of religion to many. And our justice systems perpetuate the idea that “expert” witnesses use forensic “science” to “prove” a prosecutor’s criminal allegations. Law enforcement at all levels, including the ...

Inextricably Intertwined: The Practice of Negotiated Pleas and the Rise of Mass Incarceration in America

by Casey J. Bastian

America is the world’s leader in rates of incarceration. This country consists of only 5% of the world’s total population, yet it houses about 25% of the world’s prisoners. As of 2021, there were actively more than 2.1 million people in jails and prisons in the ...

Police Often Use ‘Cover Charges’ to Mask False Arrests and Police Brutality

by Casey J. Bastian

Across America, “cover charges” are frequently alleged against citizens during encounters with police—especially when it’s a questionable “use of force” situation. Experts have identified a typical pattern involving this abusive tactic. A police officer will use excessive force, unnecessarily injure that person, and then create a ...

Quattrone Center Reveals Lack of Transparency Concerning Prosecutorial Misconduct Claims Report identifies over 7,000 instances of state attorney conduct that ‘did not comport’ with ethical, procedural, or legal rules

by Casey J. Bastian

Prosecutors are charged with the solemn duty to ensure our criminal justice systems function in an impartial, fair, and faithful manner. To that end, prosecutors are afforded broad discretionary powers concerning the implementation of their sacred duties: who to charge and with what crimes, requesting ...

‘Freedom Commons Academy’ Provides Former Prisoners Housing and Structured Re-entry Services in Syracuse

by Casey J. Bastian

Phyllis Riles’ daily life is the embodiment of her favorite Gandhi quote: “Where there’s love, there’s life.” Such a belief is the place from which her life’s work at the Freedom Commons Academy (“FCA”) springs forth. The housing development is for those recently released from incarceration ...

Expert Forensic Testimony Flawed by Implicit Racial Bias

by Casey J. Bastian

The unnecessary deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor are examples of incidents that have raised public awareness and hastened conversations about racial bias in the criminal justice system. Reforms in policing have received the lion’s share of people’s attention. However, the possibility of racial bias ...

 

 

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