How much confidence do you have in our system of justice?

After Koua Fong Lee was released from prison last week, people close to his case said they had doubts all along about aspects of his original trial. Today’s Question: How much confidence do you have in our system of justice?

  • Bernard

    It is the best money can buy. . . no money? bye bye. . . .

  • jonn good

    amnesty international rates the U. S. justice system at the bottom of western countries. This is due in part of the excessive resources available to the prosecutor’s office. Most people convicted of crimes in the U.S. are working poor and poor men. furthermore, the innocence project has found that most people they represent had a retained attorney at the time of their overcharged or wrongful conviction. Also, the largest number of individuals who have their convictions reduced or overturned under the efforts of the innocence project are working poor and poor white males. The legal action centers states that the advocacy groups have destroyed any sense of balance in the justice system and should be restricted in the ability to directly influence the outcomes of criminal proceedings. This is regretably true in minnesota.

  • Debra Krzenski

    I do not have a lot of confidence due to the fact when I had a stalker who kept breaking into my home the judge did not allow the jury to know that he had already been conficted prior to this case because he plead guilty. The jury did not know about that and the case seemed weak. This repeat offender got off. The rules of the court do not make it fair for the victim.

  • Gary F

    Compared to N Korea, Cuba, Somalia, Russia, Turkey, Iran, Iraq, Syria, etc……… Yes.

    What gets me now is that we have this “catch and release” program, were we let people out too soon. Repeat offenders are a good majority of the problem. So, that’s my biggest beef with the current system.

    There is a lot of pressure to “make someone pay” both in money and/or in prison time. Sometimes there are accidents. That’s why they are called accidents. Someone isn’t always negligent.

    It’s still a tragedy and and loss.

  • James

    Bring back the death penalty.

    It would be one heck of a deterrent.

    DTOM

  • Kevin

    With the increasing amount Judges are campaigning and taking ‘political’ sides or positions, maybe a little less confident.

    Judges should be impartial, allowing both sides of issues to be heard, and then base inclusion on merits of relevance to case.

    Some actions even at the supreme court seem to violate that general feeling. Like with Campaign finance ruling they just did.

    But compared to other countries we have systems to help correct the issues with out courts.

  • Jason

    With the U.S. justice system relying on judgment of our peers, we need to consider the abilty of our peers to make decisions about justice. With television shows having a substantial block of time devoted to crime drama, a sizable portion of the population knows justice by what they see on television. This naturally translates into what they expect to see in the courtroom. Therefore, courtrooms become theater where the better actor can sway the jury in spite of a lack of evidence or glaring inconsistencies. As the wealthy can afford better judicial “actors”, they are more likely to have better verdicts (from their perspective). Do I have confidence in the justice system? I have confidence that it will work the way those who run it want it to work. However, that does not mean I have confidence that it delivers justice.

  • Michael

    I have very little confidence. Two factors are responsible. First, the adversarial basis of the court system distorts justice as prosecutors are reinforced by the number of convictions they obtained and not pursuing the truth. This combined with their vast resources and lack of same by those charged result unjust outcomes. The second factor involves the competence and work load of public defense attorneys. The only people who benefit in this system are the private defense attorneys and those working for the criminal justice system.

  • Jim Williamson

    In the last 10 years my confidence in the American judicial system has taken a serious hit. How can treatment of detainees in Black Sites and in Guantanamo justify the action of some federal judges to declare agreement with the Bush administration on the treatment. I think with this kind of mentality in D.C., it filteres down to the state and local level. Many people who are tried in state and county courts are falsly found guilty because of the cost of a decent defense.

  • Peggy

    Let’s blame G. W. Bush, seems to work for everything else.

  • Mary

    Jury might have a say in the guilt or innocence of the defendant, it is the Judge who decides the fate of the defendant. If you have a Judge who doesn’t personally like the case, they are the ones who impose the sentence on the higher end of the sentence guideline.

    Prosecutors can also help increase the sentence by throwing in enhancement guidelines to the crime, such as Leader/Organizer or by use of Sophisticated means.

    These decisions the Judge makes is based on Judicial opinion and can be disputed for years in terms of an appeal. Such a waste of money. I wish the system could be more universal across the board.

  • James Ahler

    Our justice system is seriously broken. From the point of collection of evidence (police collect evidence to convict, not to obtain justice), through the court (adversarial, which means that those who can afford the best lawyers escape conviction; the poor get inadequate defense), through sentencing (the poor and mentally ill get harsher penalties; wildly differing sentences for same offenses), through the prison system (rehabilitation is sacrificed to retribution), the system fails to even identify justice, much less provide it. The recently introduced federal legislation to establish a commission to study and revamp the justice system is sorely needed.