On this site, you will find the full text of the 40th edition of the Prosecutor's Guide. The Guide presents a timely and comprehensive analysis of Massachusetts criminal law and its practice in the courts of the Commonwealth. It is fully updated each fall and during the year as new developments in the law warrant. Please consult our What's New page for the most recent changes. In addition, this online text is linked to a database of Massachusetts court decisions maintained by the Trial Court Law Libraries at masscases.com.

The text also cites and discusses significant criminal law cases decided by the Supreme Court, the federal Courts of Appeals, and state appellate courts from around the country. The principal focus, however, is on Massachusetts criminal law and its practice in the courts of the Commonwealth.

Access to the Guide is by annual subscription. If you are not yet a subscriber, please take the tour of a sample chapter from the Guide.

Please Note: If you are an employee of the Massachusetts Trial Court or an Assistant District Attorney, you have unlimited access to the Prosecutor's Guide web site thanks to licenses purchased on your behalf by the Massachusetts Trial Court Law Library and the Massachusetts District Attorneys Association, respectively. Please contact your office IT Department for access instructions.

Also law students at the following institutions have access through your school Law Library: Harvard, Suffolk, Boston College, Northeastern, Western New England School of Law, New England Law | Boston, Boston University, and the University of Massachusetts.

Please note:

10/13/20:   This is the 40th Edition of the Prosecutor's Guide.

"Threshold Inquiries", "Searches Incident to Arrest", and "Public Order Offenses" have been updated to reflect the important cases of Commonwealth v. Jones and Commonwealth v. Evelyn and the attempt to address racial profiling in the context of traffic stops.

10/3/20:   The sections on "Bail" and "Other Crimes Evidence" in "Procedure 1" have been revised to highlight Justice Lowy's elaboration on the Brangan requirements in Walsh v. Commonwealth and new cases touching on proof of state of mind, motive, and common scheme, as well as undue prejudice.

9/15/20:   "Indecent Assault Battery" has been revised to incorporate the Supreme Judicial Court's groundbreaking decision in Commonwealth v. Sanchez that aligns state with federal law prohibiting the discriminatory use of peremptory challenges. "Search and Seizure" has been revised to take note of Commonwealth v. Mora, a pole camera surveillance case, elaborating on the Court's recently adopted "mosaic theory" of the expectation of privacy.

Please see What's New for further details.


Massachusetts Prosecutor's Guide Online
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