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Flawed Convictions"Shaken Baby Syndrome" and the Inertia of Injustice$
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Deborah Tuerkheimer

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199913633

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199913633.001.0001

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The Limits of Judicial Review

The Limits of Judicial Review

(p.173) 9 The Limits of Judicial Review
Flawed Convictions

Deborah Tuerkheimer

Oxford University Press

Once a defendant is found guilty of shaking a baby, it is unlikely that the judgment will be undone. While there are legitimate reasons for the presumptive finality of criminal convictions, in the SBS context this norm collides with the realities of scientific progression. This chapter examines sufficiency challenges on appeal, as well as the most common claims advanced in the course of collateral attack—namely, ineffective assistance of counsel and newly discovered evidence. This inquiry demonstrates that the law’s rigidity comes at a substantial cost to justice. The case of Shirley Smith, whose SBS case made its way to the U.S. Supreme Court, illustrates many of the limits of judicial review.

Keywords:   finality, sufficiency, collateral attack, ineffective assistance, newly discovered evidence, Shirley Smith, judicial review

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