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Criminal Law Keyed to Johnson
State v. Rundle
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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:
K.R., the three-and-a half-year-old daughter of Pamela Rundle and Kurt Rundle (Defendant), was admitted to the hospital in a comatose state and covered in bruises. K.R. was blind and had possible brain damage as a result of physical abuse at the hands of Pamela. The injuries stemmed from various incidents in which Pamela threw, slapped, and kicked K.R. Pamela was charged with and convicted of numerous counts of child abuse, while Kurt was charged with intentionally causing a child bodily harm and recklessly causing a child great bodily harm. Kurt’s charges were based on a theory of aiding and abetting child abuse in violation of § 948.03(2)(b) and § 948.03(3)(a) of Wisconsin law. These sections required a guilty defendant to: (1) engage in conduct that aids another person in committing a crime and (2) have a conscious desire or intent to supply such aid. At trial, the evidence established that Kurt was present during the abuse, but various witnesses testified that Kurt never physically abused K.R. himself and had a loving relationship with K.R. However, the witnesses also testified that Kurt did not act to prevent Pamela from abusing K.R. Kurt was convicted of aiding and abetting Pamela’s child abuse. The court of appeals reversed Kurt’s convictions, citing insufficient evidence that Kurt had aided and abetted the abuse. The court of appeals acknowledged that Kurt could have been properly convicted under § 948.03(4), which criminalizes a failure to prevent child abuse, but Kurt was not being prosecuted under that section. The State 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.