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Civil Procedure Keyed to Cound
United States v. Agurs
CaseCast™ – "What you need to know"
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*Case Brief Anatomy includes: Brief Prologue, Complete Case Brief, Brief Epilogue
- The Brief Prologue provides necessary case brief introductory information and includes:
- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
- Case Key Terms, Acts, Doctrines, etc.: A case specific Legal Term Dictionary.
- Case Doctrines, Acts, Statutes, Amendments and Treatises: Identifies and Defines Legal Authority used in this case.
- The Case Brief is the complete case summarized and authored in the traditional Law School I.R.A.C. format. The Pro case brief includes:
- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
Defendent Agurs [“the Defendant”] was convicted of second-degree murder in the stabbing death of the Victim, James Sewell [“the Victim”]. On September 24, 1971, the Defendant and the Victim registered at a hotel as man and wife. The Victim had two knives on his person. The Victim’s estranged wife testified he had $360 with him as well. Fifteen minutes later, three hotel employees hear the Defendant screaming for help. Upon forced entry, the employees found the Defendant and the Victim struggling for possession of one of the knives. The Victim had several wounds. The parties were separated and the police were called. The Victim was DOA. The Defendant had no knife wounds. No money was found in the Victim’s personal effects. Defendant’s counsel argued for self-defense. Defendant was nonetheless convicted of second-degree murder. Three months, later, defense counsel filed a motion for a new trial, as he had discovered that “(1) that [the Victim] had a prior criminal record that would have further enhanced his violent character; (2) that the prosecutor had failed to disclose this information to the defense; and (3) that a recent opinion of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit made it clear that such evidence was admissible even if not known to the defendant.”
- Issue(s): Lists the Questions of Law that are raised by the Facts of the case.
- Holding: Shares the Court's answer to the legal questions raised in the issue.
- Concurring / Dissenting Opinions: Includes valuable concurring or dissenting opinions and their key points.
- Reasoning and Analysis: Identifies the chain of argument(s) which led the judges to rule as they did.
- The Brief Prologue closes the case brief with important forward-looking discussion and includes:
- Policy: Identifies the Policy if any that has been established by the case.
- Court Direction: Shares where the Court went from here for this case.