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Defense attorney plea recommendations and client race: Does zealous representation apply equally to African American and Caucasian clients?

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Abstract:

Research on racism in the justice system generally focuses on the juror, yet the vast majority of guilty convictions are obtained through plea bargains. The current research hypothesizes that criminal defense attorneys give different recommendations for accepting pleas to African American and Caucasian clients. Using practicing defense attorneys as participants, results indicated that pleas recommended to African American clients contained higher sentences than those recommended to Caucasian clients (M=2.89, SD=1.51; M=2.23, SD=1.25, respectively). Reasons for the disparate recommendations were not due to increased perceptions of guilt with the minority client nor to perceptions that the minority client would fare worse at trial.
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Association:
Name: American Psychology - Law Society
URL:
http://www.ap-ls.org/


Citation:
URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p398720_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Edkins, Vanessa. "Defense attorney plea recommendations and client race: Does zealous representation apply equally to African American and Caucasian clients?" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychology - Law Society, Westin Bayshore Hotel, Vancouver, BC, Canada, Mar 18, 2010 <Not Available>. 2014-11-28 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p398720_index.html>

APA Citation:

Edkins, V. , 2010-03-18 "Defense attorney plea recommendations and client race: Does zealous representation apply equally to African American and Caucasian clients?" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychology - Law Society, Westin Bayshore Hotel, Vancouver, BC, Canada <Not Available>. 2014-11-28 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p398720_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: Research on racism in the justice system generally focuses on the juror, yet the vast majority of guilty convictions are obtained through plea bargains. The current research hypothesizes that criminal defense attorneys give different recommendations for accepting pleas to African American and Caucasian clients. Using practicing defense attorneys as participants, results indicated that pleas recommended to African American clients contained higher sentences than those recommended to Caucasian clients (M=2.89, SD=1.51; M=2.23, SD=1.25, respectively). Reasons for the disparate recommendations were not due to increased perceptions of guilt with the minority client nor to perceptions that the minority client would fare worse at trial.


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Gender and Race Representatives: Stereotypes of female and African-American politicians


 
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