Archives: Data Analytics

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How Were the Court’s Civil Cases Distributed In the Appellate Court (Part 2)?

Yesterday, we began our study of where in the Appellate Court the Court has drawn its civil docket each year. Today, we’re reviewing the years 1997 through 2003. For the years 1990 through 1996, cases from Cook County’s First District were consistently about ten percentage points less of the civil docket than one would expect … Continue Reading

How Were the Court’s Civil Cases Distributed In the Appellate Court (Part 1)?

This week, we answer a new question in our study of the expanded Illinois Supreme Court data library: how have the Court’s civil cases been distributed among the various parts of the Appellate Court? As of 1990, Cook County accounted for 44.66% of the total population of Illinois. So if caseload followed population distribution, one … Continue Reading

What Is the State’s Winning Percentage in Criminal Appeals When It’s the Appellant?

Yesterday, we reviewed the data about how the Court’s criminal docket has been divided between cases in which the State was the appellant and defense appeals.  Today, we look at the State’s year-by-year winning percentage in each role. For the years 1990 through 1995, the State’s winning percentage in criminal appeals varied up and down … Continue Reading

How Often is the State the Appellant in Criminal Cases?

Last week, we reviewed the data on how often public entities were parties in civil cases at the Court.  Of course, criminal cases are a different matter; the State is a party to every appeal.  So this week, we address a slightly different question: how many of the Court’s criminal appeals involve appeals by the … Continue Reading

How Often Do Governmental Entities Win in Civil Cases?

Yesterday, we looked at how often governmental entities have appeared as parties in civil cases at the Illinois Supreme Court.  Today, we address the governmental entities’ winning percentage. Governmental entities won sixty percent of the time in 1990 as petitioners.  They won half the time in 1991, 60% in 1992 and 50% in 1993.  In … Continue Reading

How Common Are Governmental Parties in the Court’s Civil Docket?

For the past several weeks, we’ve looked at the Court’s record with death penalty appeals.  This week and next, we’re looking at the Court’s record with parties that are governmental entities. In Table 559, we report the total number of petitioners who were government entities between 1990 and 2004.  Governmental petitioners varied widely from 1990 … Continue Reading

Reviewing the Justices’ Voting Records in Death Penalty Appeals, 1990-2010 (Part 2)

Yesterday, we reviewed the individual Justices’ voting records in death penalty cases for the years 1990 through 1999.  Today, we’re looking at the Justices’ voting records for the years 2000 through abolition in 2010. Partial reversals with the sentence affirmed were quite rare during the years 2000 through 2004.  Justice Miller led the Court, voting … Continue Reading

Reviewing the Justices’ Voting Records in Death Penalty Appeals, 1990-2010 (Part 1)

Last week, we discussed the data on how often the Justices of the Court voted with the majority in the Illinois Supreme Court’s death penalty cases between 1990 and 2010 (after which the death penalty was abolished). This week, we review the individual Justices’ votes. In Table 551, we report the fraction of each Justice’s … Continue Reading

Measuring Influence in Death Penalty Cases – Which Justices Were Most Often in the Majority (Part 2)?

Yesterday, we began our analysis of the individual Justices’ voting records in death penalty cases – specifically, how often each Justice voted with the majority.  Today, we’ll review the data for the years 2000 through 2010.  First, the years 2000 through 2004.  Justices McMorrow (34 cases), Rarick (4 cases) and Bilandic (17 cases) voted with … Continue Reading

Measuring Influence in Death Penalty Cases – Which Justices Were Most Often in the Majority?

For the past several weeks, we’ve been comparing the death penalty jurisprudence of the Illinois and California Supreme Courts.  Having reviewed the county-by-county reversal rates last week, this week we’re looking at the individual Justices.  We’ll review two  indices of the Justices’ views and influence on the Court: first, the percentage of cases where the … Continue Reading

Were Majority Opinions in Death Penalty Cases Longer or Shorter When the Court Reversed?

Yesterday, we began reviewing the data on majority opinions in death penalty cases from 1990 through the Court’s last death penalty appeal in 2010.  Today, we look at a related question: did the Court’s majority opinions tend to run longer when the Court was partially or fully reversing? Interestingly, across the entire twenty year period, … Continue Reading

Who Wrote the Court’s Majority Opinions in Death Penalty Cases?

For the past two weeks, we’ve been studying death penalty appeals, both here and on the California Supreme Court Review blog.  This week, we turn our attention to the authors of the Court’s majority opinions in death penalty cases. Once again, we divide the cases into four results: (1) affirmance; (2) partial reversal with sentence … Continue Reading

The New Illinois Supreme Court Database – Reviewing the Data

Yesterday, we announced the completion of a substantial expansion to the Illinois Supreme Court’s database.  Today, we review the full list of data points included in the database. Join us back here tomorrow as we resume our analysis of the Court’s death penalty jurisprudence. Image courtesy of Flickr by Adam Moss (no changes).… Continue Reading

The Illinois Supreme Court Database Expands – 2,871 Cases and 275,000 Data Points

Today, we announce a substantial expansion of the Illinois Supreme Court database.  Matching the expansion earlier this year of the California Supreme Court database, the data on the Illinois Supreme Court has been expanded to include significantly more variables, as well as all the Court’s cases since January 1, 1990.  During that time, the Court … Continue Reading

Where Did the Illinois Supreme Court’s Death Penalty Cases Arise?

Yesterday, we began reviewing the Court’s county by county distribution of death penalty appeals, beginning in 1994.  Today, we will begin by reviewing the data from 2004 through 2010. The Court decided only two death penalty appeals each year from 2004 through 2007.  In 2004, the Court decided one case in Cook and one case … Continue Reading

Where Did the Illinois Supreme Court’s Death Penalty Cases Arise?

This week, we continue our parallel look at automatic death penalty appeals here and over at our sister blog, the California Supreme Court Review.  Last week, we reviewed the Illinois Supreme Court’s year-by-year caseload from 1990 until the death penalty was abolished in this state.  This week, we’re going to take a look at where … Continue Reading

How Often Did the Illinois Supreme Court Reverse Death Penalty Judgments (Part 2)?

Yesterday, we began our comparative review of the Illinois and California Supreme Court’s experience with direct review of death penalty judgments.  Today, we reach the second half of our first analysis – how often did the Illinois Supreme Court reverse death judgments? In Table 529, we report the reversal rate, divided into three classes – … Continue Reading

How Often Did the Illinois Supreme Court Reverse Death Penalty Judgments (Part 1)?

This week, we begin a dual project on the Illinois Supreme Court Review and the California Supreme Court Review – comparing the two states’ experience with automatic appeals of death penalty verdicts. Illinois has had a tumultuous recent history with death penalty verdicts.  Governor George Ryan declared a moratorium on executions in 1999, citing concern … Continue Reading

Tracking the Importance of Recusals in Criminal Cases (Part 2)

Yesterday, we began our review of the Court’s experience with recusals in criminal cases.  Today, we conclude our review with a look at the most recent years. First, let’s look at the importance of recusals in criminal cases for the years 2006 through 2011 – how often did recusals end up with the prevailing party … Continue Reading

Tracking the Importance of Recusals in Criminal Cases (Part 1)

Last week, we tracked the Court’s experience, year by year, with recusals in civil cases.  Recusals are potentially a serious issue in Illinois Supreme Court practice, since there’s no provision for replacing recused Justices with pro tem Justices, and there must be four votes for the Court to decide the case. This week, we turn … Continue Reading

Tracking the Importance of Recusals in Civil Cases (Part 1)

Last week, we reviewed the Court’s experience with certified questions from the Seventh Circuit.  This week, we begin our look at a different question: the Court’s history with recusals. Recusals are particularly important on the Illinois Supreme Court because unlike the other Court we follow, the California Supreme Court, there is no provision for replacing … Continue Reading

Are Certified Question Appeals More Likely to Be Decided by a Divided Court?

Yesterday, we looked at the small number of certified appeals the Court has decided since the late 1990s.  Since 1997, the Court has heard only eight certified question appeals from the Seventh Circuit – nearly all of them originating in the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.  Today, we look at a related … Continue Reading

How Often Does the Illinois Supreme Court Hear Certified Questions from the Seventh Circuit?

Over the past couple of weeks over at the California Supreme Court Review, we’ve been analyzing the California Supreme Court’s experience with certified questions.  So today, we turn our attention to the same issue: how often does the Illinois Supreme Court decide certified questions? The Court’s certified question docket is governed by Supreme Court Rule … Continue Reading
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