Assume that you are working at a local criminal defense law firm. The managing partner has asked you to research the following issues. The attorney anticipates that these issues could arise in a criminal case that your firm has accepted.
State and local governments must obey the Bill of Rights.
- During a state criminal prosecution, a defendant is guaranteed many rights through the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. Almost all of the Bill of Rights have been incorporated through the 14th Amendment and apply to the states. Select 1 of these constitutional guarantees that you believe is the most important, and provide an example of how this constitutional right of a state defendant might be violated during the criminal process.
- Could this violation form the basis of an appeal if the defendant is convicted?
- To which court can the verdict from a state trial be appealed (use your state as an example)?
- To which court can the verdict from a federal trial court be appealed (again, use your specific federal courts as an example)?
- Is there an intermediate court of appeals in your state or federal system?
- What is the court of last resort (highest appeals court) in your state and in the federal courts? Does this court have original jurisdiction over any criminal actions?
- Please provide citations to your references at the end of your assignment in a Reference section.