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:

6/9/21:   "Search and Seizure" has been revised to include a number of new cases, including Commonwealth v. Delgado-Rivera, in which Justice Gaziano strongly hints that the Supreme Judicial Court is prepared to abandon its traditional art. 14 analysis treating standing and expectation of privacy as separate issues in favor of the Supreme Court's Fourth Amendment single step inquiry into the reasonableness of a defendant's expectation of privacy, and Commonwealth v. Pearson, in which the Court replaces the objective test of the first prong of the independent source exception with the Supreme Court's hybrid subjective test. "Identification Evidence" has also been revised to incorporate new cases on the authentication of social media and the proper implementation of the Daubert-Lanigan test of expert scientific and technical evidence.

5/18/21:   "Police and Police Misconduct" has been revised to incorporate new cases on the use of force, due process, qualified immunity, and prisoner rights, among other topics.

Please see What's New for further details.


Massachusetts Prosecutor's Guide Online
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