1) OJ Simpson was found not guilty in criminal court and then found guilty in civil court regarding the same incident. How can that happen? Shouldn’t it be consistent? Why or why not?
My husband and I argue about this all of the time. This inconsistency can be addressed by understanding what the burden of proof is in a criminal court and in a civil court. Though details about these laws may differ per state the general rule is that in a criminal court the standard of proof which the prosecution is expected to offer is that the alleged offender is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, meaning that a juror would have to have moral certainty that the offender committed the crime and cannot find a reasonable alternative for why the evidence is as it is. In a civil court, the demand is less stringent meaning that if the prepronderance (most of the evidence) seems to indicate that the person is responsible for the crime. For example, if 60% of the evidence points to the person being responsible then he can be held liable in a civil court even if it would not amount to his conviction in a criminal court.
As an example, let's say that you have a car and you allow an intoxicated person to drive your car and they are involved in an accident in which someone is killed. The person driving could be convicted in a criminal court because the evidence could point to his/her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. And you could be found civilly responsible because you could have prevented the crime by not allowing this person to use your vehicle.