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Criminal Procedure Keyed to Ohlin
Rivera v. Illinois
Citation:556 U.S. 148 (2009)
Following a jury trial in an Illinois state court, defendant-petitioner Michael Rivera was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to a prison term of 85 years. On appeal, Rivera challenged the trial court’s rejection of his peremptory challenge to venire member Deloris Gomez. Gomez sat on Rivera’s jury and served as the jury’s foreperson. It was conceded that there was no basis to challenge Gomez for cause. She met the requirements for jury service, and Rivera does not contend that she was in fact biased against him. Rivera’s counsel observed that most of the jurors already seated were women and said he hoped to get some impact from possibly other men in the case. The court denied the counsel’s challenge and Gomez was seated on the jury.
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