casae study

Case Study

Question: Did the State of Louisiana ignore due process by rejecting Smith’s Brady claim?

Follow the Oyez Project Link to see the entire text of the case.

Note* In addition to audio recordings of the arguments and opinions on the Oyez site, the full written opinion of court’s decision is located at the bottom of the Oyez site page below the photos of the justices.

After reviewing the case, submit your answers to the following 6 questions. You only have to answer the multiple choice questions with the letter of your answer. Be detailed and thoughtful on the Essay Questions.

JUAN SMITH, PETITIONER v. BURL CAIN, WARDEN

on writ of certiorari to the orleans parish criminal district court of louisiana

[January 10, 2012]

Oyez Project link:

SMITH v. CAIN

1. As a result of this case ________________.

a. Smith’s conviction was upheld

b. Smiths conviction was overturned and the state could possibly retry him.

c. Smith’s conviction was overturned and he was acquitted.

d. the state must turn over all Brady-type material to Smith.

2. The test of whether defendant’s due process rights under Brady v. Maryland have been violated is ________________.

a. whether the state intentionally failed to turn over evidence to the defendant that was either favorable or disfavorable to the defendant.

b. whether the jury failed to consider the defendant’s evidence that the eyewitness had initially failed to identify the defendant.

c. whether the state failed to disclose to the defendant evidence that a witness has recanted eyewitness identification.

d. whether the state failed to turn over evidence to the defendant that was material to determination of defendant’s guilt.

3. When should the Court overturn a jury verdict based upon a Brady violation?

a. When the jury verdict would have been different had been different had the evidence been disclosed.

b. When there is a reasonable probability that had the evidence been disclosed, the result would have been different.

c. When the jury verdict might have been different had the evidence been disclosed.

d. When the evidence that was not disclosed was overwhelming and irrefutable.

4. The majority and dissent reached different conclusions about how the jury would view Boatner’s statements had they heard them. Do you agree with the majority or dissent about whether this evidence would have had an impact on the jury’s verdict.

5. Will Brady violations always result in a due process violation? When might they not?

6. Did the State of Louisiana ignore due process by rejecting Smith’s Brady claim?

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