British Journal of Criminology Volume: 53 Issue: 6 Dated: November 2013 Pages: 1139-1156
This article considers the extent to which the on-going use of the dock in criminal proceedings can be justified.
This article considers the extent to which the on-going use of the dock in criminal proceedings can be justified. It is argued that the use of the dock interferes with the defendant's ability to participate in the trial, the right to counsel and the presumption of innocence. This has been recognized in some jurisdictions and, in the United Kingdom, its use has been criticized by key stakeholders in the criminal justice system. Despite the launching of campaigns for its abolition, the English dock is becoming increasingly fortified and continues to be used to incarcerate defendants in trials involving minor charges. Drawing on previously unexplored archives and data from the United States, this article seeks to understand justifications for the retention of the dock and the reasons why campaigns for its abolition have failed. (Published Abstract)