Criminal Procedure Defined

Posted November 17th, 2012 by admin and filed in Uncategorized

The criminal procedure branch of the law is perhaps the most well-known to the American public. Television dramas especially bring the functions of this procedure from the court room to America’s living room. It is perhaps the most discussed area of law and one of the most important. It is within criminal procedure that half of the Bill of Rights are focused because the criminal procedure gives incredible power to the state over a person’s future.

Criminal procedure is also referred to as the criminal process and the criminal justice system. In essence, it is the structure through which crimes are investigated, the guilt of criminals adjudicated and punishment enforced.

There are several players in the criminal justice system:

  • Police
  • Prosecutors
  • Defense Attorneys
  • Courts
  • Legal rules
  • The practices and procedures of the court
  • Individuals on trial
  • Government

Serious punishment such as imprisonment or even death can be imposed upon the individuals under trial by the government. The criminal procedure is the mechanism which enforces the sanctions defined by criminal law. The criminal process in America seeks to punish only the guilty while protecting the innocent from injustice. Although different systems are in place in each state and in the federal courts, all must adhere to the regulations of the federal Constitution.

Every player in the criminal procedure plays an important role in which it is vital to seek the truth about the crime and the defendant in all circumstances. The police and prosecutors must determine the accused persons early on in the process before the case is even brought to trial. Of course, seeking the truth in court, the final determination of guilt or innocence in the process, is of absolute importance as well.

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