Dressler, Thomas, and Medwed's Criminal Procedure: Principles, Policies, and Perspectives, 8th

West Academic Publishing
Primary Subject
Criminal Procedure
CasebookPlus eBook
American Casebook Series
Publication Date
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For more than two decades, Criminal Procedure: Principles, Policies, and Perspectives (and its softcover versions, Criminal Procedure: Investigating Crime and Criminal Procedure: Prosecuting Crime), written by Joshua Dressler, George C. Thomas III and, in the past two editions, Daniel S. Medwed, has sought to inspire students to analyze and critique constitutional and non-constitutional criminal procedure doctrine.

The book features careful case selection and editing that includes dissenting and concurring opinions when useful in understanding and critiquing the law. The Notes and Questions are uniformly thoughtful and sometimes even intentionally (and, the authors hope, not unintentionally) humorous.

The Eighth Edition includes most of the cases and material that users have told us were successful in the past. The book continues to include “in the trenches” material that gives students an idea of what life is like inside the squad car, the interrogation room, and the courtroom. Among the changes and additions to the new edition:
  • More materials throughout the casebook on racism in the criminal justice system, police use of excessive force, and gender discrimination.
  • A new chapter section dealing exclusively with civil remedies for Fourth Amendment violations.
  • New Notes on other Fourth Amendment decisions since the prior edition, as well as new Problems based on recent state and lower federal court opinions.
  • Some reorganization of the interrogation materials, including a return of the old chestnut case, Escobedo v. Illinois, as a more effective bridge to Miranda v. Arizona.
  • Updated Notes on empirical research on eyewitness identification procedures.
  • In the Case Screening chapter, new Notes address recent changes in charging practices, including discussion of the movement by some prosecutors to decline to charge certain categories of crimes.
  • In the Role of Defense Counsel chapter, Scott v. Illinois is removed as a principal case and moved into the Notes for greater clarity, and there is fascinating new information regarding David Washington (of Strickland v. Washington).
  • In the Trial chapter, the addition of Ramos v. Louisiana, which overrules prior case law and presents thoughtful discussion of the role of stare decisis.