This time, we’re comparing the lag time from grant to decision in criminal cases to the ultimate case result. In order not to bias the data, we begin by eliminating the death penalty and habeas corpus cases, where the determinants of lag time are quite different than non-death criminal cases.
Once again, there is a strong relationship between the lag time and the ultimate case result: in eight of the past ten years, affirmances have been pending longer in criminal cases than reversals. In 2011, affirmances averaged 644.67 days to 488.93 for reversals. In 2014, affirmances averaged 699.38 days to 498.5 for reversals. In 2016, the difference was even bigger – 1019.25 days for affirmances, 591 days for reversals. In 2017, affirmances averaged 643.69 days and reversals came down in 551 days. Last year, criminal affirmances averaged 902.33 days and reversals averaged 548.13 days. So far this year, affirmances have averaged 672.25 days while reversals have come down in 565.58 days.
Join us back here next week as we turn to a new area of inquiry.