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  1. added 2019-06-06
    Rehabilitating Statistical Evidence.Lewis D. Ross - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
    Recently, the practice of deciding legal cases on purely statistical evidence has been widely criticised. Many feel uncomfortable with finding someone guilty on the basis of bare probabilities, even though the chance of error might be stupendously small. This is an important issue: with the rise of DNA profiling, courts are increasingly faced with purely statistical evidence. A prominent line of argument—endorsed by Blome-Tillmann 2017; Smith 2018; and Littlejohn 2018—rejects the use of such evidence by appealing to epistemic norms that (...)
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  2. added 2019-03-17
    The Problem of Culturally Normal Belief.Susanna Siegel - forthcoming - In Robin Celikates, Sally Haslanger & Jason Stanley (eds.), Ideology: New Essays. Oxford University Press.
    This paper defends an analysis of the epistemic contours of the interface between individuals and their cultural milieu.
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  3. added 2019-01-22
    Plausibility and Probability in Juridical Proof.Marcello Di Bello - forthcoming - International Journal of Evidence and Proof.
    This note discusses three issues that Allen and Pardo believe to be especially problematic for a probabilistic interpretation of standards of proof: (1) the subjectivity of probability assignments; (2) the conjunction paradox; and (3) the non-comparative nature of probabilistic standards. I offer a reading of probabilistic standards that avoids these criticisms.
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  4. added 2018-11-25
    Deviant Causation and the Law.Sara Bernstein - manuscript
    A gunman intends to shoot and kill Victim. He shoots and misses his target, but the gunshot startles a group of water buffalo, causing them to trample the victim to death. The gunman brings about the intended effect, Victim’s death, but in a “deviant” way rather than the one planned. This paper argues that such causal structures, deviant causal chains, pose serious problems for several key legal concepts. -/- I show that deviant causal chains pose problems for the legal distinction (...)
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  5. added 2018-08-23
    Legal Subversion of the Criminal Justice Process? Judicial, Prosecutorial and Police Discretion in Edmondson, Kindrat and Brown.Lucinda Vandervort - 2012 - In Elizabeth Sheehy (ed.), SEXUAL ASSAULT IN CANADA: LAW, LEGAL PRACTICE & WOMEN'S ACTIVISM,. Ottawa, ON, Canada: Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press. pp. 111-150.
    In 2001, three non-Aboriginal men in their twenties were charged with the sexual assault of a twelve year old Aboriginal girl in rural Saskatchewan. Legal proceedings lasted almost seven years and included two preliminary hearings, two jury trials, two retrials with juries, and appeals to the provincial appeal court and the Supreme Court of Canada. One accused was convicted. The case raises questions about the administration of justice in sexual assault cases in Saskatchewan. Based on observation and analysis of the (...)
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  6. added 2018-08-20
    The Prejudicial Effects of 'Reasonable Steps' in Analysis of Mens Rea and Sexual Consent: Two Solutions.Lucinda Vandervort - 2018 - Alberta Law Review 55 (4):933-970.
    This article examines the operation of “reasonable steps” as a statutory standard for analysis of the availability of the defence of belief in consent in sexual assault cases and concludes that application of section 273.2(b) of the Criminal Code, as presently worded, often undermines the legal validity and correctness of decisions about whether the accused acted with mens rea, a guilty, blameworthy state of mind. When the conduct of an accused who is alleged to have made a mistake about whether (...)
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  7. added 2017-12-23
    Legal Burdens of Proof and Statistical Evidence.Georgi Gardiner - forthcoming - In James Chase & David Coady (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Applied Epistemology. Routledge.
    In order to perform certain actions – such as incarcerating a person or revoking parental rights – the state must establish certain facts to a particular standard of proof. These standards – such as preponderance of evidence and beyond reasonable doubt – are often interpreted as likelihoods or epistemic confidences. Many theorists construe them numerically; beyond reasonable doubt, for example, is often construed as 90 to 95% confidence in the guilt of the defendant. -/- A family of influential cases suggests (...)
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  8. added 2017-08-31
    When Does Evidence Suffice for Conviction?Martin Smith - 2018 - Mind 127 (508):1193-1218.
    There is something puzzling about statistical evidence. One place this manifests is in the law, where courts are reluctant to base affirmative verdicts on evidence that is purely statistical, in spite of the fact that it is perfectly capable of meeting the standards of proof enshrined in legal doctrine. After surveying some proposed explanations for this, I shall outline a new approach – one that makes use of a notion of normalcy that is distinct from the idea of statistical frequency. (...)
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  9. added 2017-03-23
    'More Likely Than Not' - Knowledge First and the Role of Statistical Evidence in Courts of Law.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2017 - In Adam Carter, Emma Gordon & Benjamin Jarvis (eds.), Knowledge First - Approaches in Epistemology and Mind. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. pp. 278-292.
    The paper takes a closer look at the role of knowledge and evidence in legal theory. In particular, the paper examines a puzzle arising from the evidential standard Preponderance of the Evidence and its application in civil procedure. Legal scholars have argued since at least the 1940s that the rule of the Preponderance of the Evidence gives rise to a puzzle concerning the role of statistical evidence in judicial proceedings, sometimes referred to as the Problem of Bare Statistical Evidence. While (...)
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  10. added 2017-01-12
    Truth, Knowledge, and the Standard of Proof in Criminal Law.Clayton Littlejohn - forthcoming - Synthese:1-34.
    Could it be right to convict and punish defendants using only statistical evidence? In this paper, I argue that it is not and explain why it would be wrong. This is difficult to do because there is a powerful argument for thinking that we should convict and punish defendants using statistical evidence. It looks as if the relevant cases are cases of decision under risk and it seems we know what we should do in such cases (i.e., maximize expected value). (...)
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  11. added 2016-05-18
    Belief States in Criminal Law.James A. Macleod - forthcoming - Oklahoma Law Review 68.
    Belief-state ascription — determining what someone “knew,” “believed,” was “aware of,” etc. — is central to many areas of law. In criminal law, the distinction between knowledge and recklessness, and the use of broad jury instructions concerning other belief states, presupposes a common and stable understanding of what those belief-state terms mean. But a wealth of empirical work at the intersection of philosophy and psychology — falling under the banner of “Experimental Epistemology” — reveals how laypeople’s understandings of mens rea (...)
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  12. added 2016-04-24
    Parsing the Reasonable Person: The Case of Self-Defense.Andrew Ingram - 2012 - American Journal of Criminal Law 39 (3):101-120.
    Mistakes are a fact of life, and the criminal law is sadly no exception to the rule. Wrongful convictions are rightfully abhorred, and false acquittals can likewise inspire outrage. In these cases, we implicitly draw a distinction between a court’s finding and a defendant’s actual guilt or innocence. These are intuitive concepts, but as this paper aims to show, contemporary use of the reasonable person standard in the law of self-defense muddles them. -/- Ordinarily, we can distinguish between a person's (...)
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  13. added 2015-12-07
    Between Probability and Certainty: What Justifies Belief.Martin Smith - 2016 - Oxford University Press UK.
    This book explores a question central to philosophy--namely, what does it take for a belief to be justified or rational? According to a widespread view, whether one has justification for believing a proposition is determined by how probable that proposition is, given one's evidence. In this book this view is rejected and replaced with another: in order for one to have justification for believing a proposition, one's evidence must normically support it--roughly, one's evidence must make the falsity of that proposition (...)
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  14. added 2015-08-04
    Is It Possible to Provide Evidence of Insufficient Evidence? The Precautionary Principle at the WTO.Elisa Vecchione - 2012 - Chicago Journal of International Law 13 (1).
    This Article aims to demonstrate that the WTO jurisprudence on science-related trade disputes has become imbued with a specific vision of science that has prevented any possible application of the precautionary principle. This situation is due both to the WTO’s specific dispute settlement procedures and to the substantive nature of precautionary measures. Indeed, such measures’ foundation on “insufficient scientific evidence” dramatically undermines the probative value of science in WTO adjudication and creates a seeming contradiction: The system requires defendants to provide (...)
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  15. added 2015-02-08
    On Evidence, Medical & Legal - Letter & Authors' Reply.Clifford Miller - 2005 - Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons 10 (4):98-99..
    This exchange of correspondence with a critic provides helpful explanations of aspects of the paper "On Evidence, Medical and Legal" by the same authors.
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  16. added 2015-01-30
    Reasonable Doubt : Uncertainty in Education, Science and Law.Tony Gardner-Medwin - 2011 - In Philip Dawid, William Twining & Mimi Vasilaki (eds.), Evidence, Inference and Enquiry. Oup/British Academy. pp. 465-483.
    The use of evidence to resolve uncertainties is key to many endeavours, most conspicuously science and law. Despite this, the logic of uncertainty is seldom taught explicitly, and often seems misunderstood. Traditional educational practice even fails to encourage students to identify uncertainty when they express knowledge, though mark schemes that reward the identification of reliable and uncertain responses have long been shown to encourage more insightful understanding. In our information-rich society the ability to identify uncertainty is often more important than (...)
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  17. added 2014-03-16
    A Philosophy of Evidence Law: Justice in the Search for Truth.H. L. Ho - 2008 - Oxford University Press.
    This book examines the legal and moral theory behind the law of evidence and proof, arguing that only by exploring the nature of responsibility in fact-finding can the role and purpose of much of the law be fully understood. Ho argues that the court must not only find the truth to do justice, it must do justice in finding the truth.
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