Monday, December 23, 2013

Palko v. Connecticut case brief

Palko v. Connecticut case brief summary
302 U.S. 319 (1937)

CASE SYNOPSIS
Defendant appealed a decision by the Supreme Court of Errors of Connecticut, which sustained a death sentence imposed. Defendant claimed that Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6494, which allowed the State to appeal in a criminal case, violated U.S. Constitutional Amendment XIV because it allowed defendant to be tried twice and thus subjected him to double jeopardy in violation of U.S. Constitutional Amendment V.

CASE FACTS
Defendant appealed a judgment that affirmed the death sentence imposed on the ground that Conn. Gen. Stat. § 6494, which allowed the State to appeal in a criminal case, violated U.S. Constitutional Amendment XIV because it allowed defendant to be tried twice and thus subjected him to double jeopardy in violation of U.S. Constitutional Amendment V.

DISCUSSION

  • The United States Supreme Court affirmed, holding that not all U.S. Constitutional Amendment V rights were applicable to the states through U.S. Constitutional Amendment XIV, and the state could choose not to adopt a right if it was not of the very essence of a scheme of ordered liberty, and its abolishment would not violate a principle of justice so rooted in the traditions and conscience of the American people as to be ranked as fundamental. 
  • The Court ruled that the state statute did not deny petitioner due process of law because allowing a retrial did not violate fundamental principles of liberty and justice where it was only done to ensure a trial free from substantial legal error.

CONCLUSION
The Court affirmed the death sentence for first degree murder.


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