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Criminal Law keyed to Dripps
Davis v. Commonwealth
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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:
On a cold afternoon, a paramedic with the Lynchburg Fire Department responded to a call at a house occupied by Mary B. Davis (Defendant) and her mother, Emily B. Carter. The paramedic found Carter, deceased, lying on a bed. There was no heat in Carter’s room. The only food in the house was two cans of soup, a can of juice, and an open box of macaroni and cheese. However, there was an operable stove, a supply of firewood, and a color television found in Defendant’s room. A forensic pathologist concluded that Carter had died from “pneumonia and freezing to death due to exposure to cold with a chronic state of starvation.” Defendant was charged with involuntary manslaughter and waived her right to trial by jury. At trial, the forensic pathologist testified that “no one survives” with the body temperature that Carter had and that Carter had not eaten for at least thirty days. Additionally, evidence suggested that Carter had been senile and completely disabled for a number of years and that Defendant was responsible for the total care of her mother. Defendant was Carter’s representative to receive food stamps and was authorized to receive Carter’s social security benefits. Defendant was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and she appealed.
- 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.