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Criminal Justice System – A Case Analysis Assignment Help

“The Grim Sleeper Serial Killer Case”. 

? Describe the nature of the case, citing it in appropriate legal format (i.e., Miranda v. Arizona, 1966).

? Explain the investigation. What legal foundations and constitutional laws and amendments were present? What type of defense, if any, was used?

? Describe the court proceedings; pre-trial hearings, indictments, the trial, defense and prosecution arguments, and court outcome—acquittal, guilty, not guilty, NGRI, GBMI, etc.

? Finally, describe the correctional phase, if applicable: jail, prison, probation, parole, etc.

? Would there be a significant difference if adjudicated in another level of court (i.e, federal)? Would the punishment be more, or less severe? Would the evidence be handled differently?

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Introduction:

Criminal justice system of United States of America is quite complex with diverse individual elements of it. The system invariably needs to follow through the set of the procedures before convicting or sentencing a defendant. Inorder to get these objectives the process will undergo as set of series of actions like investigation, where the in the case will be subjected to thorough investigation of the facts and the occurrences. During this phase the truth of the case will be established and subsequently the process continues to take control of the fugitives. They will be arrested and this will be followed by the submission of the evidence in the court. The court proceedings will continue in the trial exploring the facts and the will ultimately will provide appropriate sentencing of the fugitive. Grim Sleeper serial killer case is one of the popular nightmare cases of the past of LosAngels, where several black women were brutally attacked during this time. The write-up discussed the case and presented all the proceedings of the case in the appropriate legal format. Grim Sleeper Serial case establishes the depths of investigation that can happen in the United States of America, the discussion spans to the diverse defenses put before by defense attorneys. The process and procedures employed by the prosecutors and case proceedings. Also the role of law enforcement in the process and procedures that they can take up for investigation of the case for fugitive is presented in detail in the report. The report presents the complete proceedings of the case. The key aspect of the case is DNA matching after long years. Accidently the DNA from the past cases matched with that of the Son of Franklin Jr and this subsequently worked on to explore the ultimate guilt of Franklin Jr in this case of "Grim Sleeper serial killer".

Overview of the case and Analysis:

Typically any case will contain police investigation, arresting, followed by evidence presentation, court proceeding as well will contain eventual sentencing of the defendant in the case. The process followed in this procedure will be as per the prevailing criminal justice system in the region. The following write-up will provide more insights into the Grim Serial killer case(Broomfield,2014). Grim sleeper serial killer case is about the series of murders that have occurred in-between 1985 to 2007. During this time in Los Angeles about 10 women and 1 man were killed. Lonnie Franklin Jr is the key defendant of the case. During the times between 1988 to 2002 almost for 14 years there is break in the killings and hence the case is called as Grim Sleeper serial killer case(Simkin& roychowdhury,2018). The present case, the accused was arrested and for long time there is no trial of the defendant made in the court due to several reasons. In any case, in the aftermath the person was subjected to trial in accordance with the Rights of the victims in the region as per the Marsy's law. There were several complications surfaced during the progression of the case from arrest to trial and to subsequent convicting of the criminal accused. At the outset there were delays attributed to the defense lawyers and later there were raised concerns stating the incompetency of the DNA specialists, questioning their aptitude to take up the evidence and submit in the court. Also there were comments stating that the DNA evidence(Steinhauer,2010) is not correct and that matched with another accused who is already there on death row due to serial killings during the same time. In any case, after five years of arrest of the accused, the court case proceeded and trial has taken place.

Nature of the case:

Lonnie David Franklin Jr Vs LA court of justice, 2016 is an unique case where in the culprit felt like he can go away with the killings and continued the same for more than 22 years. The culprit used to target his victims mostly women for rape and later used to kill them either by shooting or by strangling to death. In most of the cases, there is no evidence or support information to find the culprit and the small time car thief Lonnie Franklin managed to remain anonymous. It is a serial murder and rape case and the culprit does have all the potential to get convicted for death punishment as per the law. However during the total tenure of the case, there is a clear break from 1988 to 2002 of about 14 years where there are no any identified murders, due to this he is termed Grim sleeper (Sathyavagiswaran et al., 2018). In Franklin Jr Vs LA court of justice case, the culprit is finally convicted for 10 murders and for one attempted murder and is sentenced to death. He was ex- service men and worked on different types of jobs after getting out from the service. He had a family with two children and was leading a comfortable social life at the time of arrest. Finally when he was arrested at the age of 63 years, after DNA matching is confirmed and in a span of three years of conviction, he was given death sentence. The case was dubbed as the most monstrous crime by the judge during the trial time. Though Franklin Jr was sentenced to death, still it is not executed due to procedural obligations, however still he will never be released, he will either die in prison or will be executed based on the approval of the new procedure for execution of the convicted in United States of America.

Investigation, Legal foundations, Constitutional laws. Amendments and Defense

The current case investigation has the routes since 1985. During 1980s several black women deaths in and around los Angels were marked as NHI(No Human Involved) type of cases and subsequently they are considered as cases of chronic drug users and prostitutes. However still the Black women count formed under the leadership of Margaret Prescod doubted that the murders are preplanned serial killings and formed and compelled LAPD to form a task force for the investigation of these murders(Neely,2015). LAPD and Los Angeles Sheriff's department coalition started investigation into the issue and found that a serial killer involved in most of the murders. During the same time investigations revealed that there are several serial killers involved in the process and involved in murders. They are popularly depicted as strawberry Murders. From 1988 to 2002 there were no murders and they resumed later, hence these series of the murders are considered to be made by Grim Sleeper. Subsequently with the DNA analysis in 2007, indicated that the at least eleven unsolved murders of Los-Angles are connected and are linked to a single killer. The fact is hidden and even victims were not informed of the case, later in 2008 a reward of $500,000 is announced for catching the victim. By 2010 after exhaustive interviews with the survivors and with familial DNA analysis(Cantrell,2010) findings Lonnie David Franklin Jr was arrested. On June 6,2016 with a total of ten murders and one attempted murder case, he was proved to be guilty and awarded with death sentence. Legal foundations for the death sentence in United States is resevered for more heinous and cruel cases, worst of the worst culprits in such cases only will be given death sentence. In the current case, Franklin Jr committed about 10 proven murders and 1 attempted murder and may be many more. He deserves such punishment in accordance with the legal foundations of the Los Angeles. Constitutional laws of the country and the Los Angeles allows for amnesty and mercy in the cases where the offender pleas guilty and if the circumstances allows for such consideration based on other factors like the discretion of the judge. However still in the current case, the offender never pleaded guilty and the case involves no scope for consideration of mercy on the offender, hence the sentence is finalized. Defense attorney mainly relied on denying the validation of the DNA evidence, the validation of the procedures employed for investigation. The key claim made by the defense attorneys included that there is evidence of other's DNA also on the victim's body and hence there can be involvement of others in the death of the victim. Lonnie had pleaded not guilty, but was framed by prosecution as involved in the case, all the bullets were proved to be from the same weapon and also the DNA was evidentially proved to be related to Lonnie Franklin Jr.

Court proceedings, Pre trial hearings, Indictments, the trial - Prosecution arguments - court outcome etc.

The court proceedings occurred after long time later of the arrest of the Franklin Jr as suspect in the case. Since the DNA familial matching(Makin,2015) has occurred with his family members, the investigation of the secret trial of Franklin Jr and subsequent findings worked on to prove the guilty of Franklin Jr and his involvement(Dresser,2011). Hearings during the pre trial, indictment and the trial mostly involved defense of the suspect as not guilty. Concerns involved questioning of the procedure for validation of the DNA and proving the guilty of the involvement of the person(Garcia et al.,2017). All these procedures later were defended by the prosecution and hence the court believed the suspect is guilty based on satisfactory evidence(Dolan et al.,2010). Considering the unique nature of the case and severity, the guilt is punished with death sentence. However, still the punishment is not executed still.

Correction phase:

There is no parole or liberty to the guilty in this case; he was just sentenced to death. There is no scope for the release of the culprit from the prison. He will be in prison, till the sentence gets executed. He will be in prison without parole till the death sentence is executed(Dieter, 2016).

Alternative justice:

Whether the case is handled in other court or not, it is more likely that the verdict can be the same. As the severity of the case is very unique the culprit deserves the punishment reserved for the rarest of the rare cases and hence there may not be any difference in the verdict(Fox et al.,2018). However the length of the trial and the prosecution and defense efficiencies and the arguments and the supporting evidence collection and the defense of the same would have made difference. However based on the current resources and the realistic situation there is very little chance for the difference in the verdict. Hence the judgment would not have differed.

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