U.S. Judicial System

Illustration of a police officer standing under the scales of justice (State Dept./D. Thompson)

How police are held accountable in the U.S.

When a U.S. police officer is involved in a deadly incident, departments - often with civilian oversight - investigate to decide next steps.
Illustration showing judge's gavel lying on laptop with drawing promoting a vaccine on its screen (State Dept./D. Thompson)

U.S. cracks down on COVID-19 scams

The U.S. Department of Justice shut down a website pushing a bogus COVID-19 vaccine. Learn how the agency is protecting Americans from other scams.
Illustration of elected official standing with local government service providers (State Dept./D. Thompson)

Local government: Mayors, police, school boards get the job done

Americans interact most with local governments, which provide services from public safety to school standards. This is part of a series on U.S. federalism.
Illustration of a federal government canopy standing over the U.S. statehouses (State Dept./Doug Thompson)

State government: Where innovation often flows

America's 50 states are known as “laboratories of democracy” because they try policy ideas often adopted elsewhere. This is part of a series on federalism.
Illustration of buildings with arrows leading to others of different sizes and people (State Dept./Doug Thompson)

Federal government: More than the White House and Congress

Learn more about the federal government in the United States. This article is part of a three-part series on how federalism works in America.
Large yellow building with blue and white trim (© Alamy)

Helping Vietnam’s justice system crack down on intellectual property theft

Following a push by Vietnam to improve enforcement of intellectual property laws, the U.S. trained 120 Vietnamese judges on intellectual property rights.
Graphic showing elements of ransomware attack (State Dept.)

U.S. goes after Iranian hackers who attacked city, hospital computers

Two Iranian hackers allegedly extorted $6 million in bitcoin payments by installing ransomware on the computers of big U.S. cities, hospitals and others.
Head of an ancient Persian soldier carved into limestone (Manhattan District Attorney's Office)

U.S. judge orders return of Persian antiquity to Iran

An ancient Persian artifact stolen decades ago will soon be headed home. Learn how, and why, the U.S. combats art smuggling and repatriates stolen cultural property.
President Trump leaning in to speak to Brett Kavanuagh and his family (© Alex Brandon/AP Images)

What’s next for Trump’s pick for the Supreme Court?

President Trump is nominating an experienced federal judge to be a U.S. Supreme Court justice. What should the nominee expect next?