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Faculty Profiles

Ronald Wrightdownload image icon

Ronald Wright

Needham Yancey Gulley Professor of Criminal Law

Worrell 3336


Criminal Procedures: Cases, Statutes, and Executive Materials (Aspen Law and Business (Wolters Kluwer) 2015).

Sentencing Law and Policy: Cases, Statutes, and Guidelines (2013).

Criminal Procedures: Cases, Statutes, and Executive Materials (Aspen Law and Business (Wolters Kluwer) 2011).

Criminal Procedures: Cases, Statutes, and Executive Materials (Aspen Law and Business (Wolters Kluwer) 2007).

Sentencing Law and Policy: Cases, Statutes, and Guidelines (2007).

Annual Supplements for Sentencing Law and Policy: Cases, Statutes, and Guidelines (annually, 2005-2012) (2005).

Sentencing Law and Policy: Cases, Statutes, and Guidelines (2004).

Criminal Procedures: Cases, Statutes, and Executive Materials (Aspen Law and Business (Wolters Kluwer) 2003).

Annual Supplements for Criminal Procedures: Cases, Statutes, and Executive Materials (annually, 1999-2016) (1999).

Criminal Procedures -- Prosecution and Adjudication: Cases, Statutes, and Executive Materials (Editions in 1999, 2005, 2007, 2011, 2015) (1999) (with Marc Miller, Jenia Turner, Kay Levine).

Criminal Procedures -- The Police: Cases, Statutes, and Executive Materials (Editions in 1999, 2007, 2011, 2015) (Aspen Law and Business (Wolters Kluwer) 1999).

Criminal Procedures: Cases, Statutes, and Executive Materials (Aspen Law and Business (Wolters Kluwer) 1998).

Teachers' Manual for Criminal Procedures: Cases, Statutes, and Executive Materials (Editions in 1998, 2003, 2007, 2011, 2015) (1998).

Administrative Law and Practice (West Supplements 1992-1995) (1992).

Are Expert Review Committees Protected? An Annotation of Relevant State Statutes (American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists 1990).

Book Chapters

Prosecutor Institutions and Incentives, in 3 Reforming Criminal Justice: Pretrial and Trial Processes (Erik Luna ed., 2017) 49-72 (Erik Luna 2017).

Elected Prosecutors and Police Accountability, in Policing the Black Man: Arrest, Prosecution, and Imprisonment 234-254 (Angela J. Davis 2017).

The Supreme Court and Sentencing Reform, in Legal Issues in Criminal Justice (Craig Hemmens 2014).

Persistent Localism in the Prosecutorial Services of North Carolina, in Crime & Justice: A Review of Research 211-255 (Michael Tonry 2012).

Reporting for Duty: The Universal Prosecutorial Accountability Puzzle and an Experimental Transparency Alternative, in Transnational Perspectives on Prosecutorial Power 392-407 (2012).

Charging and Plea Bargaining as Forms of Sentencing Discretion, in Oxford Guide to Corrections and Sentencing 247-269 (Kevin Reitz and Joan Peterselia 2012).

Grand Juries and Expertise in the Administrative State, in "Grand Jury 2.0: Modern Perspectives on the Grand Jury" (2010).

Prosecutor Elections and Overdepth in Criminal Codes, in Criminal Law Conversations (2009).

Subjective and Objective Discretion of Prosecutors, in Criminal Law Conversations (2009).

Drugs and Druggists, in Personal Injury: Actions, Defenses and Damages (1991).


Sharkfests and Databases: Crowdsourcing Plea Bargains, 6.

Career Motivations of State Prosecutors, 86 George Washington Law Review 1667-1710 (2018).

The Jury Sunshine Project: Jury Selection Data as a Political Issue, 2018, No. 4 University of Illinois Law Review 1407-1442 (2018).

Collaborative Construction of a New Legal Field, 68 72-78 (2018).

Prosecutor Risk, Maturation, and Wrongful Conviction Practice, 41 Law and Social Inquiry 648-676 (2017).

Evidence Laundering in a Post-Herring World, 106 Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology 627-679 (2017).

Place Matters in Prosecution Research, 14 Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law 675-703 (2017).

Reinventing American Prosecution Systems, 46 Crime and Justice 395-439 (2017).

Images and Allusions in Prosecutors' Morality Tales, 5 Virginia Journal of Criminal Law 38-67 (2017).

The Invisible Revolution in Plea Bargaining: Managerial Judging and Judicial Involvement in Negotiations, 95 Texas Law Review 325-397 (2016).

Batson: An Empirical Analysis of North Carolina Criminal Cases,.

Training for Bargaining, 57 William and Mary Law Review 1445-1504 (2016).

North Carolina Grand Juries and Prosecutor Conflicts, 20 North Carolina State Bar Journal 10-11, 61 (2015).

Beyond Prosecutor Elections, 67 SMU Law Review 593-615 (2014).

The Cure for Young Prosecutors' Syndrome, 56 Arizona Law Review 1065-1128 (2014).

Mercenary Criminal Justice, 2014 University of Illinois Law Review 1175-1226 (2014).

The Many Faces of Prosecution, 1 Stanford Journal of Criminal Law and Policy 27-47 (2014).

Sentencing Climate Change and the Infrastructure of Finality, 4 Wake Forest Journal of Law and Policy 1-8 (2014).

Plea Bargaining, Encyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice 3535-3544 (2013).

The Wickersham Commission and Local Control of Criminal Prosecution, 96 Marquette Law Review 1199-1219 (2013).

Criminal Defense Lawyer Moneyball: A Demonstration Project, 70 Washington and Lee Law Review 1221-1267 (2013).

It's the Reply, Not the Comment: Observations about the Bierschbach and Bibas Proposal, 97 Minnesota Law Review 2272-2284 (2013).

A Criminal Law Atheist Teaching in the Seminary, 10 Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law 637-639 (2013).

Prosecution in 3D, 102 Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology 1119-1180 (2013).

Review of "The Machinery of Criminal Justice", Criminal Law and Criminal Justice Books (2012).

Community Prosecution, Comparative Prosecution, 47 Wake Forest Law Review 361-372 (2012).

Padilla and the Delivery of Integrated Criminal Defense, 58 UCLA Law Review 1515-1542 (2011).

Portable Minimalism in Sentencing Politics, 32 Cardozo Law Review de novo 9-22 (2011).

The Future of the Administrative Presidency: Turning Administrative Law Inside-Out, 65 Miami Law Review 577 (2010).

The Worldwide Accountability Deficit for Criminal Prosecutors, 67 Washington and Lee Law Review 1587-1620 (2010).

Public Defender Elections and Popular Control of Criminal Justice, 75 Missouri Law Review 803-829 (2010).

New Perspectives on Brady and Other Disclosure Obligations: Report of the Working Groups on Best Practices, 31 Cardozo Law Review 1961-2035 (2010).

Mexican Drug Violence and Adversarial Experiments, 35 N.C. Journal of International Law and Commercial Regulation 363-385 (2010).

Fragmented Users of Crime Predictions, 52 Arizona Law Review 91-96 (2010).

How Prosecutor Elections Fail Us, 6 Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law 581-610 (2009).

The Black Box, 94 Iowa Law Review 125-196 (2009).

Guilty Pleas and Sub-Markets, 157 University of Pennsylvania Law Review PENNumbra 68 (2008).

Dead Wrong, 2008 Utah Law Review 89-106 (2008).

Leaky Floors: State Law Below Federal Constitutional Limits, 50 Arizona Law Review 227-259 (2008).

Systematic Content Analysis of Judicial Opinions, 96 California Law Review 63 (2008).

Charge Movement and Theories of Prosecution, 91 Marquette Law Review 9-38 (2007).

Entries for Mandatory Minimum Sentences and Sentencing Guidelines, Encyclopedia of American Civil Liberties (2006).

The Political Economy of Application Fees for Indigent Criminal Defense Counsel, 47 William and Mary Law Review 2045-2087 (2006).

The Charging and Sentencing Effects of Depth and Distance in a Criminal Code, 84 North Carolina Law Review 1935-1982 (2006).

Federal or State? Sorting as a Sentencing Choice, 21 Criminal Justice 16-21 (2006).

The Power of Bureaucracy in the Response to Blakely and Booker, 43 Houston Law Review 389-414 (2006).

Incremental and Incendiary Rhetoric in Sentencing After Blakely and Booker, 11 Roger Williams University Law Review 461-471 (2006).

Proceedings, The Future of American Sentencing: A National Roundtable on Blakely, 2 Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law 622 (2005).

Trial Distortion and the End of Innocence in Federal Criminal Justice, 154 University of Pennsylvania Law Review 79-156 (2005).

'The Wisdom We Have Lost': Sentencing Information and Its Uses, 58 Stanford Law Review 361-380 (2005).

Blakely and the Centralizers in North Carolina, 18 Federal Sentencing Reporter 19-22 (2005).

Sentencing Commissions as Provocateurs of Prosecutorial Self-Regulation, 105 Columbia Law Review 1010-1047 (2005).

Prosecutorial Guidelines and the New Terrain in New Jersey, 109 Penn State Law Review 1087-1105 (2005).

The Future of American Sentencing: A National Roundtable on Blakely, Federal Sentencing Reporter (2004).

Parity of Resources for Defense Counsel and the Reach of Public Choice Theory, 90 Iowa Law Review 219-268 (2004).

Secret Police and the Mysterious Case of the Missing Tort Cases, 52 Buffalo Law Review 757-791 (2004).

Tough Times for Hard Time, 33 Wake Forest Jurist Magazine 14-17 (2003).

Honesty and Opacity in Charge Bargains, 55 Stanford Law Review 1409-1417 (2003).

Counting Cases About Milk, Our"Most Nearly Perfect Food," 1860-1940, 36 Law & Society Review 51-112 (2002).

Counting the Cost of Sentencing in North Carolina, 1980-2000, Crime & Justice, A Review of Research (2002).

How the Supreme Court Delivers Fire and Ice to State Criminal Justice, 59 Washington and Lee Law Review 1429-1457 (2002).

The Screening/Bargaining Tradeoff, 55 Stanford Law Review 29-118 (2002).

The Sentencing Judge as Immigration Judge, 51 Emory Law Journal 1131 (2002).

Are the Drug Wars De-Escalating? Where to Look for Evidence, 14 Federal Sentencing Reporter 141-146 (2002).

The Canadian Difference in Sentencing (reviewing Making Sense of Sentencing), Punishment and Society (2001).

Immunity, Historical Encyclopedia of U.S. Independent Counsel Investigations (2000).

The Abruptness of Acton, 36 Criminal Law Bulletin 401-431 (2000).

Judge Frank Johnson in the Long Run, 51 Alabama Law Review 1381-1395 (2000).

Rules for Sentencing Revolutions (reviewing Fear of Judging: Sentencing Guidelines in the Federal Courts), Yale Law Journal (1999).

Your Cheatin' Heart(land): The Long Search for Administrative Sentencing Justice, 2 Buffalo Criminal Law Review 723-809 (1999).

Empty Heart, Vibrant Corpus, 12 Federal Sentencing Reporter 86-91 (1999).

The Future of Responsive Sentencing in North Carolina, 11 Federal Sentencing Reporter 215-218 (1999).

Flexibility in North Carolina Sentencing, 1995-1997, Overcrowded Times (1998).

Three Strikes Legislation and Sentencing Commission Objectives, 18 Law and Policy 429-463 (1998).

Teaching Holistic Sentencing, 10 Federal Sentencing Reporter 338-343 (1998).

Book Review of Akhil Amar, Constitutional Criminal Procedure: First Principles, Constitutional Commentary (1997).

When Do We Want Incomplete Agreements? A Comment on Sunstein's Holmes Devise Lecture, 31 Wake Forest Law Review 459-470 (1996).

Congressional Use of Immunity Grants after Iran-Contra, 80 Minnesota Law Review 407-468 (1995).

North Carolina Avoids Early Trouble with Guideline, Overcrowded Times (1995).

Three Strikes Legislation and a Sinking Fund Proposal, Federal Sentencing Reporter (1995).

Sentencing Guidelines of the Right Sort, 78 Judicature 168 (1995).

Amendments in the Route to Sentencing Reform, 13 Criminal Justice Ethics 58-66 (1994).

North Carolina Prepares for Guideline Sentencing, Overcrowded Times (1994).

A Post-Webster Reminder About Delegation and Regulatory Theory, Abortion and the States: Political Change and Future Regulation (1993).

A Progress Report on the North Carolina Sentencing and Policy Advisory Commission, 28 Wake Forest Law Review 421-461 (1993).

The Law of Federal Sentencing in the Supreme Court's 1992-93 Term, 6 Federal Sentencing Reporter 39-42 (1993).

Drug Sentences as a Reform Priority, 5 Federal Sentencing Reporter 199-200 (1993).

The Law of Federal Sentencing in the Supreme Court's 1991-92 Term, 5 Federal Sentencing Reporter 108-111 (1992).

Why Not Administrative Grand Juries?, 44 Administrative Law Review 465-521 (1992).

Complexity and Distrust in Sentencing Guidelines, 25 U.C. Davis Law Review 617-637 (1992).

The U.S. Sentencing Commission as an Administrative Agency, 4 Federal Sentencing Reporter 134-136 (1991).

The Law of Sentencing in the Supreme Court's 1990-91 Term, 4 Federal Sentencing Reporter 58-59 (1991).

Sentencers, Bureaucrats, and the Administrative Law Perspective on the Federal Sentencing Commission, 79 California Law Review 1-90 (1991).

Letters From Beyond The Regulatory State (reviewing Cass R. Sunstein, After the Rights Revolution), 100 Yale Law Journal 825-851 (1990).

Kent Greenawalt and the Border Skirmishes of the First Amendment (reviewing Kent Greenawalt, Speech, Crime, and the Uses of Language), 39 Emory Law Journal 1245-1260 (1990).

State Level Expert Review Committees– Are They Protected?, Public Health Reports (1990).

Judicial Priorities after Mistretta, 1 Federal Sentencing Reporter 374 (1989).

The Proposed Organizational Sanctions Guidelines and the Issue of Corporate Probation, 1 Federal Sentencing Reporter 295-298 (1988).

Judge Frank Johnson of Alabama, 1987 Annual Survey of American Law xix-xxii (1987).

In Your Court: State Judicial Federalism in Capital Cases, 18 The Urban Lawyer 659-705 (1986).

Note, The Civil and Criminal Methodologies of the Fourth Amendment, 93 Yale Law Journal 1127-1146 (1984).


From Replicability to Replication in Systematic Coding of Legal Decisions (March 19, 2019).

Prosecution that Earns Community Trust.

Prosecutors Must Learn to Listen to Critics and Communities (October 26, 2016).

Twenty Most-Cited Criminal Law & Procedure Faculty in the United States, 2010-2014 (inclusive), Law Professor Blogs Network (May 18, 2016).

Rethinking Criminal Procedure in the age of mass incarceration, PrawfsBlawg (April 2, 2016).

New manual helps OSH activists push for criminal charges in workplace tragedies, Industrial Safety & Hygiene News (March 24, 2016).

Should Hard-Line Prosecutors Be Nervous?, Ebony (March 22, 2016).

Big Wins for Black Lives Matter, Slate (March 16, 2016).

Piling On Criminal Fees (May 20, 2015).

Why is Criminal Justice Only Partially Privatized?, Jotwell: The Journal of Things We Like (Lots) (February 11, 2010).

Periodic Blogs, Sentencing Law and Policy; Empirical Legal Studies; Prawfsblawg (April 2004).

Prosecutor Rex, Philadelphia Inquirer (December 19, 2003).

The Right to Refuse Searches Is in Danger, Los Angeles Times (April 15, 2002).

Buffalo Creek: A Game of Discovery, CALI computer exercise, 1991 and 1995 editions (April 1991).

Coney Island: A Game of Discovery, CALI computer exercise, 1984, 1985, 1988, 1991, and 1995 editions (September 1984).