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Criminal Law keyed to Dripps
State v. Hanton
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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:
While driving his vehicle, Solomon Hanton (Defendant) swerved in front of another car and cut the driver off, causing the driver to apply his brakes to avoid a collision. The other man became quite angry and closely followed Defendant until they reached a stoplight. After both cars stopped, the other man got out of his car, went to Defendant’s car and opened the driver’s side door and attempted to pull Defendant out of the vehicle. Defendant then drew a pistol and shot the man who died several days later. Defendant was charged with first-degree manslaughter while armed with a deadly weapon. At the close of the evidence the trial court instructed the jury “[w]hen a defendant claims he killed another in defense of his person or property, the burden is upon that defendant only to produce some evidence tending to prove that the homicide was done in self-defense. It is not necessary for the defendant to prove this to you beyond a reasonable doubt, nor by a preponderance of the evidence. The defendant sustains this burden of proof, if from a consideration of the evidence in the case you have a reasonable doubt as to whether or not the killing was done in self-defense.” Defendant was found guilty and he appealed. The court of appeals affirmed the conviction and the Supreme Court of Washington granted review.
- 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.