Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Criminal Justice Research Guide: Federal Laws and Court Decisions

A good starting point for finding resources in criminal justice



West's Encyclopedia of American Law  

2nd edition, 13 vols.

Provides current information on more than 5,000 legal topics. Includes completely revised articles covering important issues, biographies, definitions of legal terms and more. Covers such high-profile topics as the Americans with Disabilities Act, capital punishment, domestic violence, gay and lesbian rights, and physician-assisted suicide.


Gale Encyclopedia of Everyday Law

Gale Encyclopedia of Everyday Law

3rd edition, 2 vols (2013)

This encyclopedia fills the gap between legal texts focusing on the theory and history behind the law and more practical guides dealing with the law and its everyday effect upon its citizens.

Containing approximately 200 articles, includes: brief descriptions of each issue's historical background, covering important statutes and cases; profiles of various U.S. laws and regulations; and details of how laws and regulations vary from state to state.


Selective List of Free Websites

United States Code "The United States Code is a consolidation and codification by subject matter of the general and permanent laws of the United States. It is prepared by the Office of the Law Revision Counsel of the United States House of Representatives." (Home page)

US Supreme Court Opinions -Full text of all decisions from 1893 to date. Can be searched by citation, case title, and full text

Supreme Court Collection  From the Legal Information Institute, Cornell University. Provides full text of all US Supreme Court decisions since 1990, plus 610 of the most significant earlier decisions. Indexed by topic, date, and parties.

United State Public Laws 1973-Present - From Thomas/Library of Congress; access to full text of Public Laws beginning with those of the 93rd Congress. Listed by law number and bill number.


Government Resources

US Government Links - our Web page with links to the US Constitution, Federal Register, Congressional Record, and more