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Criminal Law Keyed to Johnson
United States v. Ely
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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:
A district judge appointed a lawyer named Brady to represent David Ely (Defendant), an indigent defendant. Defendant requested that a lawyer named Bartley be appointed instead, as Defendant felt that he had a better relationship with Bartley. Neither Defendant nor the state proffered any evidence related to the list of counsel available for appointment. Even though Bartley was available and willing to take Defendant’s case, the judge refused to change the appointment, explaining that lawyers were appointed based on a rotation system in order to maintain organized and ordered counsel appointments and that, because Brady was a competent and experienced attorney, there was no reason to replace Brady with Bartley. Defendant appealed his conviction to the court of appeals, arguing that his rights under the Sixth Amendment had been violated when the judge refused to allow Defendant to choose his appointed counsel.
- 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.