Martin Rudy and the Criminal Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

This is a felony.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled following the indictment and Martin and his attorney are present at the scheduled date and time. The charge is presented and the judge makes a decision that there is enough evidence to proceed with the case. Martin, now referred to as the defendant, is asked for his plea and he pleas "Not Guilty." A trial date is scheduled for two months away.

The day of trial comes and Martin and his attorney are ready. The first order of business is to pick a jury. After the potential jury is brought into he courtroom, the attorneys are allowed to ask questions of the members, in a process called voire dire, in order to determine whether they have views that would make their service on the jury inappropriate. This would allow the juror to be removed for cause. In addition each attorney has a set number of preemptory challenges in which the attorney can remove a juror for any reason. After the jury is selected, they are impaneled and given instructions by the judge.

The trial now proceeds. There is a presumption of innocence in Martin's favor. "Criminal procedure puts the burden of proof on the prosecution - that is, it is up to the prosecution to prove that the defendant is guilty, as opposed to having the defendant prove that he is innocent; any doubt is resolved in favor of the defendant."

The District Attorney and Martin's attorney present their opening arguments, a preview of their cases. The prosecution then begins to present witnesses and after direct testimony, the defense is allowed to cross-examine the witness. When the District Attorney has finished presenting his case, Martin's attorney begins his presentation. "The defendant is not required to testify under the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution, but must answer the prosecution's questions if he or she takes the stand." Martin decides to testify, and the District Attorney is able to shake his testimony. Martin's attorney calls several other witnesses and the District Attorney cross-examines those witnesses.

After both sides have finished, the attorneys give their closing arguments. Once they are completed, the judge will issue final instructions to the jury and they can begin their deliberations in private.

The jury's first task is to elect a foreperson, someone who will direct the deliberations.

All twelve jurors must agree on guilt or innocence. It doesn't take the jury long to decide on Martin's guilt and they are soon back in the courtroom to announce their verdict.

Once the verdict is announced, and Martin has been found guilty, the judge agrees to continue his bail, pending sentencing. The defendant is ordered to see the probation officer before sentencing for a pre-sentencing report. The sentencing hearing is set for two weeks.

Two weeks later, Martin is back in the courtroom to find out what his fate will be. The judge has reviewed the pre-sentencing report and, after both the prosecutor and Martin's attorney have spoken, he decides that since this is Martin's first offense as an adult, he will sentence him to six months in the county jail. He revokes Martin's bail and the court officers take him into custody.

That night, Martin is transported to the county jail. Once he arrives, he is strip searched, fingerprinted and given a shower. He is assigned a cell with another prisoner, and begins to serve his six-month sentence. His daily life is quite monotonous and extremely regimented. He eats three times a day and showers twice a week. Lights are turned off at 9 pm to end his day and the cells are opened at 7 am to begin his day. He is given clothes to wear. Periodically, he and his fellow prisoners are counted.

In most jurisdictions, Martin will serve much less than his original sentence. In this case, he is completed with his sentence in three months, with time off for good behavior.


Wikipedia. "Criminal Procedure." Retrived May 25, 2005 at

Legal Information Institute. "Criminal Llaw: An Overview."

Rertrieved May 25, 2005 at

Wikipedia. "Criminal Procedure." Retrived May 25, 2005 at

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