Elements Criminal Offenses
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Ake vs. Oklahoma
- Question: Does an indigent criminal defendant have a right to have the state provide a psychiatric evaluation to be used in the defendant's behalf if he needed it.
- Holding: Yes - Where the indigent defendant in a murder case where the death penalty could be assessed.
- Vote: 8-1 Rehnquist
Chimel vs. California
- Question: Could the warrantless search of Chimel's entire house be constitutionally justified as incident to his arrest?
- Holding: No - An arresting officer may search only the area "within the immediate control" of the person arrested, meaning the area from which he might gain possession of a weapon or destructible evidence. Any other search of the surrounding area requires a search warrant.
- Vote - 7-2 Black and White
Arizona vs. Gant
- Question: When police arrest the recent occupant of a vehicle who got out voluntarily, can they search the vehicle without a warrant?
- Holding: No unless -
- 1) Belton does not authorize a vehicle search incident to a recent occupant’s arrest after the arrestee has been secured and cannot access the interior of the vehicle.
- 2) Circumstances unique to the automobile context justify a search incident to arrest when it is reasonable to believe that evidence of the offense of arrest might be found in the vehicle.
- Vote: 5-4
Batson vs. Kentucky
- Question: Did the prosecutor's use of peremptory challenges to exclude the four blacks from the jury violate Batson's Sixth and Fourteenth Amendment rights to a fair jury trial and his Fourteenth Amendment right to equal protection of the laws?
- Holding: Yes - prosecutors may not use race as a factor in making peremptory challenges; defendants must only make a prima facie showing on the evidence from their case to mount a challenge to race-based use of peremptories.
- Vote: 7-2 for Batson
Barker vs. Wingo
- Question: Whether a defendant must invoke the right to a speedy trial.
- Holding: Yes In its opinion, the Court used a four-factor balancing test to determine if the right to a speedy trial had been denied:The Length of the Delay: the court concedes that five years a great time for delay
- The governmental reasons for delay: to determine to delay in order to get a better witness against the defense is not a good reason; however, to do so because of witness availability is
- The defendant’s responsibility to assert his rights
- prejudice to the defendant
- In the case at hand, the court found that there had been little prejudice to the defendant, because he had failed to assert his right or object to the delays until they had already occurred. Also, the court felt that Barker was gambling on the outcome of Manning’s trial, which is why he waited for the delays. Thus, the court held that Barker was not prejudiced by the delay.
- Vote - 9-0
Enmund v. Florida
- Question: Is it cruel and unusual punishment to give the death penalty for a minor participant in the crime that had no intention of killing anyone. He was the getaway driver.
- Holding: The Eighth Amendment does not allow the death penalty for a person who is a minor participant in a felony and does not kill, attempt to kill, or intend to kill
- Vote: 5-4
Miranda v. Arizona
- Question: Does the police practice of interrogating individuals without notifiying them of their right to counsel and their protection against self-incrimination violate the Fifth Amendment?
- Holding: Yes
- Vote: 5-4
Tison v. Arizona
- Question: Was the death penalty constitutional under Enmund when the brothers who broke their father out of prison were given a death sentence for the murders their father comitted?
- Holding: Yes The death penalty may be imposed on a felony-murder defendant who was a major participant in the underlying felony and exhibits
- Vote: 5-4?
Jackson v. Denno
The right to have a confession judged voluntary or involuntary
Supreme Court held that a criminal defendant is entitled to a pretrial determination of whether any confession s/he gave was voluntary or involuntary
Confession is introduced at trial only if a judge has ruled that it was given voluntarily
Mosier v. State of Oklahoma
North Carolina v. Alford
Question: Can a judge accept a guilty plea without pleading guilty?
- Holding:Yes There are no constitutional barriers in place to prevent a judge from accepting a guilty plea from a defendant who wants to plead guilty while still protesting his innocence. Different than pleading nolo contendre
- Vote: 6-3
Terry v. Ohio
- Question: Do the police have the right to search you when they stop you
- Holding: Yes Fourth Amendment prohibition on unreasonable searches and seizures is not violated when a police officer stops a suspect on the street and frisks him without probable cause to arrest, if the police officer has a reasonable suspicion that the person has committed, is committing, or is about to commit a crime and has a reasonable belief that the person "may be armed and presently dangerous."
Tennessee v. Garner
- Question: Can officers shoot a fleeing felon?
- Holding: Yes Law enforcement officers pursuing an unarmed suspect may use deadly force to prevent escape only if the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others.
- Vote: 6-3
Sell v. US
- Question: Can a court force a defendant to take medication that may make them competent to stand trial?
- Holding: Yes Drugs to make defendant competent to stand trial may be administered involuntarily under very limited circumstances
- Vote: 6-3
Bechtel v. Oklahoma
- Question: Whether Appellant should have been able to present expert testimony on battered woman syndrome to show she killed in self defense
- Holding: The trial court erred in not allowing testimony on the syndrome.A battered woman is repeatedly subjected to forceful, physical or psychological behavior by a man in order to coerce her to do something he wants her to do without any concern for her rights. The woman must go through the battering cycle at least twice.
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