Different Wedding Cake
The expression “wedding cake” is used in areas not related to wedding. The structure of a typical wedding cake, flat at the bottom and gradually tapering upward, leads to the analogical use of the expression in different disciplines and subjects.
Wedding Cake Model: Insurance
There is a model for testing new insurance applications called “Wedding Cake Model”. It is a functional test plan for assessing new life insurance proposals. The model is so designed as to gradually increase the complexity of the test covering more and more functional areas across the testing phase. While testing a new life insurance application, this model in the beginning has a simple case to run through the system which as the testing progresses is modified to demonstrate more complex scenario. More complex the case, more functional areas of the system are covered by the testing.
Wedding Cake Model: Criminal Justice
The “Wedding Cake Model” of criminal justice was propounded by Samuel Walker. According to this model, like a wedding cake, criminal justice has four major layers. Walker assumes that different cases are handled differently by the system. The difference is mainly on account of existence of the cases in different layers. The first and most publicized layer contains celebrated cases like the O.J. Simpson case, the case of Susan Smith who was convicted of killing her two sons, the bombing at Oklahoma to name a few. To this layer belongs two other categories- intended victim famous like attempted assassin of US President Ronald Reagan by John Hinckley. The “white collar” or “corporate crime” also is under this category. The other category relates to cases where the criminals are from the lowest strata of society yet end up with lot of publicity due to landmark court judgements like Ernesto Miranda or Danny Escobedo. The above category of famous or celebrated cases though forming a small percentage of the reported criminal cases seize immense public imagination and impact public perception about how criminal justice works.