In Massachusetts during the 1890’s crime was prevalent but not overbearing. The breakdown of crime shows that property crime was the highest and that murder had not happened often 1
Https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/Digitization/86421NCJRS.pdf. 1890. https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/Digitization/86421NCJRS.pdf.. This leads us to come to the conclusion that because murders were not happening often, the court system and jurors were not as familiar with this type of violent crime and how to handle it in the court room.
Based off of the pie chart below, we can see how much each crime was accounted for and can conclude how often judges and jurors acted in regard to the type of crime. This could have been a major influence on why Lizzie Borden was found not guilty.
The type of evidence these crimes produce, and later on need in court, are extremely different. The evidence that police find in a burglary case may be easier to use to find the suspect guilty than it would be in a murder case, such as the Lizzie Borden case. The more evidence there is that can not be proven, know as circumstantial evidence, the harder it is to put the suspect behind bars. Circumstantial evidence is evidence that relies on an inference to connect it to a conclusion of fact2. That’s what happened with Lizzie Borden and her deceased parents. All the evidence pointing to Lizzie was considered circumstantial and no hard evidence.