Ric Simmons

Chief Justice Thomas J. Moyer Professor for the Administration of Justice and Rule of Law, The Ohio State University
Areas of Expertise:
  • Criminal Justice

About Ric

Simmons' expertise is in the field of criminal procedure; specifically, how the law of search and seizure should respond to advances in technology. He has also written on the grand jury and the privatization of the criminal justice system.



"Private Criminal Justice" Mercer Law Review (2007).

Discusses the ways in which the adjudicatory aspect of our criminal justice system has become privatized. Argues that greater privatization would be a net benefit for all of the stakeholders in the system.

"The Two Unanswered Questions of Illinois v. Caballes: How to Make the World Safe for Binary Searches" Tulane Law Review 80 (2005).

Proposes expanding the binary search exception to the Fourth Amendment to allow for new uses of investigative technology that are not as invasive but which can provide valuable information to law enforcement.

"Searching for Terrorists: Why Public Safety is Not a Special Need" Duke Law Journal 59, no. 5 (2010): 843-926.

Critiques the "special need" exception to the Fourth Amendment and argues that the government is relying too heavily on this exception in its terrorism investigations.

"Ending the Zero-Sum Game: How to Increase the Productivity of the Fourth Amendment," Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, December 2012.

Applies economic theory to criminal procedure law and proposes changes to search and seizure rules based on that application.

"The Role of the Prosecutor and the Grand Jury in Police Use of Deadly Force Cases: Restoring the Grand Jury to Its Original Purpose " Cleveland State Law Review 65, no. 4 (2017).

Argues that prosecutors should use the grand jury more effectively in cases involving police lethal use of force. Proposes greater transparency rules for the grand jury to effectuate this change.

"Quantifying Criminal Procedure: How to Unlock the Potential of Big Data in Our Criminal Justice System," Michigan State Law Review, August 2016.

Discusses how police use of big data analytics can be used by prosecutors and courts in deciding how to legally proceed with criminal cases.

In the News

Ric Simmons quoted on the Mueller investigation in Zachary Fryer-Biggs, "Mueller’s Questions Show That He Wants to Get Trump to Incriminate Himself" Vox, May 1, 2018.
Ric Simmons quoted on the Trump administration in Zachary Fryer-Biggs, "Firing Mueller and Rosenstein Won’t Save Trump’s Closest Allies" Vox, April 11, 2018.
"Michael Smerconish Show," Ric Simmons, Interview with Michael Smerconish, POTUS Radio Channel, November 17, 2014.
"Cost No Reason to Shun Judicial Elections ," Ric Simmons, Columbus Dispatch, October 17, 2010.
"Steubenville Case Shows How the Rules Have Changed," Ric Simmons, CNN, March 17, 2013.