Constitutional Limits

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  1. Due Process Clause (5th & 14th): Void for Vagueness Doctrine 
    • Void for Vagueness Doctrine: invalidates statute when: 
    • (1) No notice that conduct is criminal 
    • (2) Promotes arbitrary and discriminatory enforcement
  2. Void for Vagueness Case: Papachristou (vagrancy ordinance very broad) 
    No notice: normally innocent conduct made criminal 

    Arbitrary enforcement: no standards of discretion
  3. Void for Vagueness Case: Morales (gangs can't loiter together in public place) 
    No notice: intimidating acts & additional innocent acts 

    Arbitrary enforcement: discretion does not protect non-gang members
  4. Cruel and Unusual Punishment Clause (8th): Sentences & Death Penalty 

    Kenndy (death penalty for minor rape against 8th) 
    Graham (non-homicide crime, juvenile life without parole against 8th C2) 
    Ewing (repeat felon stole golf clubs, 25 yr to life, no 8th violation) 
    • Classification 1: Non-homicide Cases (sentences) 
    • Proportionality Standard: crime is proportional with the severity of the sentence
    • Test: 
    • (1) Compare gravity of the offense and severity of sentence 
    • (2) Compare sentence with sentences imposed on others in the same jurisdiction and other jurisdictions for same crime 

    • Classification 2: Homicide cases (death penalty) 
    • Test: 
    • (1) nature of the offense: serious crime 
    • (2) Characteristics of defendant: 
    •       1. juveniles
    •       2. mentally challenged 
    •       3. no intent to kill or foresee death 
    • (3) Evolving standards of decency: degree of national consensus
  5. Equal Protection Clause (14th): Discrimination
    Equal Protection: prohibits differential treatment based on characteristics '

    • Strict Scrutiny: Must be met
    • (1) constitutionally protected characteristics 
    • (2) intentional discriminatory conduct 
    • (3) No compelling state interest 
    • (4) Not narrowly tailored to serve interest 

    Intermediate Scrutiny: applies to gender 

    Rational Basis: unintentional discriminatory conduct
  6. Equal Protection Case: McCleskey (death penalty applied in discriminatory manner)  
    • Evidence of intentional discrimination: specific to own case 
    • Statistical evidence: limited to few variables & decision maker explain disparity 
    • (1) jury selection 
    • (2) Title VII violations
Card Set:
Constitutional Limits
2015-11-28 05:14:55

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