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Criminal Law Keyed to Johnson
Gilbert v. State
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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:
Roswell Gilbert (Defendant), aged seventy-five, and his wife, Emily Defendant, lived together in a Florida condominium and had been married for fifty-ine years. Emily suffered from severe osteoporosis and Alzheimer’s disease, and was in constant pain. At trial, witnesses testified that Emily’s condition deteriorated over the years, and they had seen her crying and looking very ill. In one instance, a witness had overheard Emily tell her husband that she was so sick that she wanted to die. Roswell testified that Emily lost her memory over time and become increasingly dependent upon him. On March 3, Roswell took Emily to the hospital, but she became upset and said she wanted to go home. Roswell took her home. The next day, the couple went out to lunch as they usually did, after which Roswell put Emily on the couch and administered her pain medication. Still in pain, Emily said, “Please, somebody help me.” At trial, Roswell explained that he knew he had to be the one to help his wife and that he did so by shooting her in the head with a gun twice. Roswell said that he wanted to end her suffering and did not care about the consequences for himself. The jury found Roswell guilty of premeditated first-degree murder, and he was sentenced to life in prison. Pursuant to § 775.082 of the Florida Statutes, the mandatory minimum sentence for first-degree murder was twenty-five years. As a result, Roswell would be ineligible for parole until at least age 100. Roswell appealed his sentence.
- 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.