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{ Chapter 15 Lesson 2 The American Legal System. Protections Against Unlawful Imprisonment  One of the most important protections is found in Article.

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Presentation on theme: "{ Chapter 15 Lesson 2 The American Legal System. Protections Against Unlawful Imprisonment  One of the most important protections is found in Article."— Presentation transcript:

1 { Chapter 15 Lesson 2 The American Legal System

2 Protections Against Unlawful Imprisonment  One of the most important protections is found in Article 1, writ of habeas corpus.  “you should have the body.”  This refers to the practice of bringing a prisoner before the judge to justify his or her imprisonment.  The writ is a court order.  Habeas Corpus safeguards individuals against being kept in jail unlawfully.  A bill of attainder is a law that punishes a person accused of a crime without a trial or a fair hearing in court.  Ex post facto law is a law that would allow a person to be punished for an action that was not against the law when it was committed.

3 Administration of Justice  Due process means that the government may not take our lives, liberty, or property without following legal procedure.  Ex. A person accused of a crime must have the opportunity for a trial by jury.  Reading of rights makes sure that people accused of crimes get fair treatment.  They must have every chance to defend themselves.  The rights read are from the Constitution and they are based upon the presumption of innocents.

4 Fourth Amendment Rights  The Fourth Amendment protects citizens against “unreasonable search and seizures.”  It gives Americans the right to be secure in their homes and property.  A search warrant is a judges authorization for a search.  It describes the exact place to be searched and what objects may be seized, or taken.  If police find evidence through an illegal search, the evidence must not be used in court.  This rule is known as the exclusionary rule.  Evidence gained in a way that violates the Fourth Amendment may not be used in trial.

5 Fifth Amendment Rights  The Fifth Amendment state that no person can be forced “to be a witness against himself” in a criminal case.  It protects individuals against self-incrimination.  This means that individuals do not have to answer questions that might show they were involved with a crime.  Under the case of Miranda v. Arizona, the court ruled that police must inform suspects of their right to refuse to answer police questions.  Now, before they can question a person in custody, police must issue a what is known as a Miranda Warning.  The Fifth Amendment also protects the accused form double jeopardy.  A person who is tried form a crime and found not guilty may not be tried again for the same crime.  The amendment also entitles people to a grand jury.

6 Sixth Amendment Rights  The Sixth Amendment grants the accused the right to be defended by a lawyer.  In the 1963 Court case Gideon v. Wainwright, the court said that the amendment means that if a defendant cannot afford a lawyer, the state must provide one.  The accused have the right to know the accusations against them.  They have the right to be tried by an impartial, or fair jury.  The Sixth Amendment guarantees the right to a speedy and public trial.

7 Eighth Amendment Rights  The Eighth Amendment outlaws excessive, or extreme, penalties.  It forbids “cruel and unusual punishments.”  A punishment may not be out of proportion to the crime.  For example, a life sentence for shoplifting would be excessive.  The Eighth Amendment also prohibits excessive bail.  Bail is a sum of money that serves as a security deposit.  An arrested person can pay a court to be let out of jail while awaiting trial.  When the defendant shows up for the trial, the money is returned.


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