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Criminal Law Keyed to Gershowitz
Commonwealth v. Webster
Citation:59 Mass. (5 Cush.) 295, 386
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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:
The defendant is a professor of chemistry at the medical college attached to the University of Cambridge. He was indicted for the murder of Dr. George Parkman on November 23, 1849. Dr. George Parkman left his home on November 23, 1849, and preceded normally through his day until he was seen about to enter the medical college. He never returned home. A search was conducted until body parts were found in the defendant’s laboratory in the medical college on November 30th. The defendant was arrested the same day. The body parts seemed to be the remains of Dr. Parkman. Dr. Parkman had been requesting payment of notes from the defendant who told Dr. Parkman that if he came to the college on the 23rd he would repay Dr. Parkman. However, the defendant did not have any means to pay. The defendant later confessed to killing Dr. Parkman.
- 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.