Beety, an associate professor of law, won the award for her article “Judicial Dismissal in the Interest of Justice,” published last year in the Missouri Law Review (Volume 80, Issue 3). In the article, Beety examined the capacity of judges to grant clemency, or dismiss cases, in the interest of justice.
According to Beety, most of the country’s 1.6 million inmates are serving sentences for non-violent offenses. She argues that by making judges more accountable, they can dismiss some cases based on overzealous prosecutions, race-based patrolling, and the overuse of “three strikes” laws.
Beety looked at factors such as community impact, prosecutorial misconduct, safety and welfare of the community, and a conviction’s effect on public confidence in the criminal justice system. She proposed reform of the criminal justice system and practical assistance for individual cases and lives.