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Is the 6th Amendment Right to Counsel (lawyer) a Fundamental Right?

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Presentation on theme: "Is the 6th Amendment Right to Counsel (lawyer) a Fundamental Right?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Is the 6th Amendment Right to Counsel (lawyer) a Fundamental Right?
Gideon v. Wainright (1963) Is the 6th Amendment Right to Counsel (lawyer) a Fundamental Right?

2 Clarence Earl Gideon -born in 1910 -grew up in poverty
-dropped out of school -went to jail many times -married 4 times

3 The Crime -June 3, 1961-break in at the Bay Harbor Poolroom in Panama City , FL. -Witness stated he saw Clarence Earl Gideon leave poolroom with a wine bottle and money in his pockets -Police arrested Gideon: charged him with breaking and entering with the intent to commit petty larceny

4 The Trial Gideon appeared in court and was too poor to afford counsel, whereupon the following conversation took place: The COURT: Mr. Gideon, I am sorry, but I cannot appoint Counsel to represent you in this case. Under the laws of the State of Florida, the only time the Court can appoint Counsel to represent a Defendant is when that person is charged with a capital offense. I am sorry, but I will have to deny your request to appoint Counsel to defend you in this case. GIDEON: The United States Supreme Court says I am entitled to be represented by Counsel.

5 Why Was Gideon Denied a Lawyer?

6 Betts v Brady (1942) -SCOTUS ruled (6-3) that state courts are NOT required to provide a lawyer to defendants that cannot afford one -Majority of SCOTUS said that right to a lawyer is NOT a fundamental right, such as freedom of speech -Only if defendant can prove special circumstances will a lawyer be provided

7 Hugo Black -SCOTUS Justice from -Dissented (disagreed) with the majority opinion in Betts v. Brady -In his dissent said that the denial of a lawyer based on financial stability makes it so that those in poverty have an increased chance of conviction, which is not equal protection of the laws under the Fourteenth Amendment

8 Florida State Prison in Raiford, FL.

9 Petition to SCOTUS Writ of Certiorari- formal request to SCOTUS to hear case from lower court In forma pauperis- the process a poor person uses to get a case to the Supreme Court SCOTUS agreed to hear Gideon’s case

10 Who Will Be Gideon’s Lawyer in SCOTUS?

11 Abe Fortas

12 SCOTUS Decision -9-0 in favor of Gideon
-Overturned Betts v. Brady decision of 1942 -SCOTUS ruled that the right to a lawyer IS a fundamental right for ALL citizens -Guess who wrote the majority opinion for SCOTUS?

13 Justice Hugo Black

14 What Happened to Gideon?

15 New Trial for Gideon -August 5, Gideon on trial for same crime in same court with same judge in Panama City, FL. -This time Gideon has a lawyer- Fred Turner -Jury finds Gideon NOT GUILTY of crime committed in 1961

16 Legacy of Gideon v. Wainwright
-All defendants have the right to a lawyer -Expanded the rights of accused -Right to a lawyer IS a fundamental right -In Miranda v. Arizona (1965) SCOTUS ruled police must tell accused they have right to a lawyer

17 Literature

18 Movie

19 Irony?

20 Questions?

21 What Did You Learn? Write at least 5 sentences explaining the impact the Gideon v. Wainwright(1963) decision had on the right to a lawyer.

22 Gideon-Constitutional Hero?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Iustxd3Vgw

23 Gideon’s Trumpet- The Movie


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