Re: ACBL District 22 disciplines Wirt Gilliam
- From: "John R. Mayne" <jrmayne@xxxxxxxxx>
- Date: 2 Oct 2005 11:53:58 -0700
Thomas Bushnell, BSG wrote:
> "Peter Leighton" <pleighto1@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> writes:
> >> On the other hand, where there is a guilty plea, there certainly is
> >> guilt.
> > Not necessarily (though usually).
> > Prosecutors can threaten to throw the book at a defendant, and a
> > defendant will take a relatively minor sentence in order to avoid a
> > disaster, even if he is innocent. This can be a rational choice.
True, this can happen. It's quite rare, IMO, but it can happen.
> A defendant must *admit the facts of the offense* as a part of
> pleading guilty. He may not actually be guilty of the crime, but he
> is then guilty of the false allocution.
False, as far as all jurisdictions. Some jurisdictions either
discourage or don't have "No contest" or similar pleas. Many
jurisdictions do not require allocution. (In California, allocutions
are quite rare. Most defendants plead no contest. Most defendants are
quite obviously guilty of the crime charged.)
Again, as a general rule, the people who are pleading no contest are
guilty. A strong presumption of guilt lies with a person found guilty
by a court.
But it isn't a perfect system in the US (or, I gather, anywhere else.)
Some nominal number of utterly innocent persons plead to minor crimes
to avoid higher exposure. Some higher number of those guilty of a
crime, but not the one charged, plead.
As to the case under discussion, I have no comment whatsoever, and I am
*not* saying it is parallel to criminal action.
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