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Criminal Law Keyed to Johnson
People v. Clayton
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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:
Charles Clayton (Defendant) formed a partnership called Clayton Realty Company with Thomas and Donna Gray. The Grays contributed a total of $60,000 in return for a 50 percent share of the partnership. Later, Defendant entered into another partnership agreement with Evan Jones to form ERA Clayton Realty (ERA Clayton). Days later, Defendant and the Grays dissolved the initial partnership, with Defendant agreeing to pay the Grays $300 per month for 10 years. Defendant made $1,500 in payments to the Grays from ERA Clayton’s partnership account. The ERA Clayton partnership agreement stated that checks could only be drawn on the partnership’s bank account for partnership purposes. Defendant was charged with felony theft under Colorado Revised Statutes § 18-4-401, which provides that a person commits theft if the person knowingly obtains or exercises control over anything of value of another person without authorization and with the intent to permanently deprive the other person of the use or benefit of the thing of value. The district court found that Defendant had paid a personal debt to the Grays using money from the ERA Clayton partnership account. However, the district court held that a partner could not be charged with the theft of partnership property, because partnership property did not constitute a thing of value to another person as contemplated by the statute. The district court dismissed the charge against Defendant. The State appealed, arguing that an unauthorized taking of partnership property by a partner constituted theft.
- 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.