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From Amanda Knox to O.J., Casey Anthony to Kyle Rittenhouse, our justice system faces scrutiny and pressure from the media and public like never before. Can the bedrock of “innocent until proven guilty” survive in what acclaimed Seattle attorney and legal analyst Anne Bremner calls the age of judgement?
When unscrupulous Italian prosecutors waged an all-out war in the media and courtroom to wrongly convict American exchange student Amanda Knox for a murder she didn’t commit, family and friends turned to renowned Seattle attorney and media legal analyst Anne Bremner to help win her freedom. The case was dubbed the “trial of the decade” and would coincide with the explosion of social media and a new era of trying cases in public as much as the courtroom. While Italian prosecutors, the press, and online lynch mobs convicted Knox in the court of public opinion, Bremner would draw upon her decades in the courtroom and in front of the camera to turn the tide with a new kind of defense in pursuit of justice.
In Justice in the Age of Judgement, Anne Bremner and Doug Bremner take us inside some of the biggest cases of recent times and offer their expert, thought-provoking insights and analysis as our legal system faces unprecedented forces fighting to tip the scales of justice their way. Why couldn’t prosecutors convict O.J. Simpson despite all of the evidence seemingly proving he killed his wife Nicole? Could a jury remain unbiased in the face of overwhelming public pressure in the trial of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd? Why was Kyle Rittenhouse exonerated after shooting three people (killing two) with an assault rifle at a violent rally despite widespread media reports seemingly proving his guilt, and national calls for his conviction?
Justice in the Age of Judgement is an unparalleled and unflinching look at the captivating cases tried on Twitter and TV, where the burden of proof and fundamental legal tenet of “innocent until proven guilty” is under assault from the court of public opinion.
Justice in the Age of Judgment: From Amanda Knox to Kyle Rittenhouse and the Battle for Due Process in the Digital Age by Anne Bremner and Doug Bremner is a fascinating take on the impacts social media has had on public opinion. Anne Bremner’s perspectives illuminate this book from multiple vantage points—her work as a news reporter/profiler, as a lawyer and in the courtroom for multiple high -profile cases, and as a legal analyst—she has the experience and the analysis abilities to write a compelling story and to back it up with evidence. Anne and Doug tell a clear story; one laid out in layman’s terms, yet still fascinating to read.
Justice in the Age of Judgment: From Amanda Knox to Kyle Rittenhouse and the Battle for Due Process in the Digital Age by Anne Bremner and Doug Bremner expounds on multiple high-profile cases from O.J. Simpson’s trial to Amanda Knox, to George Floyd. Anne herself was involved in many of these either in the courtroom or as an analyst on the news. Her firsthand accounting brings a fresh voice to each case alongside actual evidence. Her extensive work on Amanda Knox’s case, for example, introduced brand new aspects of the case to me as a reader that I hadn’t heard. My experience reading this book was exactly to their point—as a society, the quick blurbs on social media whether it be Twitter, Instagram, etc. lead to conclusions about the guilt or innocence of a person before the case has even been deliberated. And while our justice system is good, not every prosecutor is without his or her flaws. The miscarriage of justice in some of these cases or the call for justice like in George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery has largely hinged on social media’s influence on public opinion. If a legal team can get ahead of these talking points and use them to assuage the public (think O.J. Simpson’s trial), they’ve got their case in the bag. This book breaks down the legal system’s approach using different cases as examples.
Anne and Doug are both highly skilled experts in their field. Alone, they’d both bring enough to the table to write several books, but together, their voices lend extensive credibility. Doug’s expertise in psychology and brain science lends an even more interesting take to some of Anne’s more salient points regarding bias. The opening argument is typically the deciding factor for many jury members –many don’t change their minds after this. For the court of public opinion, this is often true from the first headline or tweet. As Anne lays out the facts in case after case demonstrating how media influenced other’s opinions, her points drive home the struggle modern day courts face. Aside from the legal system, in an age where many of us have become armchair crime detectives with various crime podcasts, her points impact us all.
We’ve all read the headlines about these cases—Casey Anthony, Scott Peterson, George Floyd. Whether we were interested or not in the specific details of each case, we all likely had an opinion about the guilt or innocence of each person. That’s human nature. Anne and Doug will take you deeper into each case—demonstrating what impacted the court’s ruling, what facts were especially important to each case or how the individual players impacted each case positively or negatively. It’s fascinating. Whether crime stories are your jam or psychology or human behavior, this book will grab your attention and hold it for all 281 pages, and you won’t be sorry! Justice in the Age of Judgment: From Amanda Knox to Kyle Rittenhouse and the Battle for Due Process in the Digital Age by Anne Bremner and Doug Bremner comes highly recommended by Artisan Book Reviews. Book reviewed by Rachel McMahon for Artisan Book Reviews.
Justice in the Age of Judgment by Anne Bremner & Doug Bremner
takes first place in the
ABR Book Excellence Award
contest for best True Crime & Nonfiction books
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