Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2006, $292,893)
The goal of the research is to provide state and federal prosecutors with information that can assist in the efficient prosecution of terrorism cases. To accomplish this, project personnel will:
' Assess the relationship between prosecutorial and defense strategies and case outcomes in terrorism trials;
' Assess whether changes in terrorism tactics have affected how terrorist defendants behave at trial;
' Develop a greater understanding of the factors affecting terrorists' decisions to plead guilty or go to trial;
' Provide an analysis of pre-and post-9/11 federal terrorism cases; and
' Add prosecutorial and defense strategies variable to the American Terrorism Study (ATS) database on terrorism cases from 1980 to 2004.
Data for this project will come from several sources: 1. 'The American Terrorism Study,' which includes a statistical database of all federal indictments resulting from official FBI terrorism investigations for the period 1980-2004; 2. U.S. Sentencing Commission data on all convicted terrorists in the ATS dataset from 1988-1999 and supplemented with a matched sample of non-terrorist for the same period; 3. federal court case records (indictments, dockets, etc,); and 4. information from other open sources, such as newspaper accounts of the trials. The ATS database currently has information on over 700 terrorists indicted for 8,100 violations of federal criminal law from 1980-2004.
Analysis of issues relating to the plea bargaining process will involve the use of simultaneous structural equation and logistic regression modeling, while analysis of defense and prosecutorial strategies will involve the use of descriptive as well as multivariate techniques such as multiple regression.