Presentation on theme: "Our Court System Terms, procedures, and ideas you need to know."— Presentation transcript:
Our Court System Terms, procedures, and ideas you need to know
Criminal and Civil Law Criminal Law For violations of a law passed by a legislative body. Felonies and misdemeanors. The State v. the defendant [a person or an entity] First Trial = Court of Original Jurisdiction Both the act and the punishment is defined by legislative code [RCW’s] Civil Law Most of these involve a loss of “property” Person v. Person [corporation] First Trial = Court of Original Jurisdiction The loss has previously been defined as loss by a prior court OR, a court is now being asked to define it as a loss for the first time.
Criminal Law Guilty = Beyond A Reasonable Doubt [90- 100% vote to convict] Punishment is as defined by law. Jail, Prison, Probation, and/or fine. Matrix, as developed by the state, determines this. If state loses, case is over. If state wins, defendant can appeal Civil Law Guilty = Preponderance of Evidence-Over ½ vote to convict Punishment is financial and/ or loss of “property”. Whoever loses the case can appeal.
Questions determined at trial Substantive Questions: Questions of facts; Questions of evidence; Listen to evidence and determine guilt or innocence. This is done by a jury [the trier of fact], OR, if requested by defendant, a judge. This is known as a bench trial.
Questions determined at trial Procedural Questions These are the rules and guidelines that the case must follow. Commonly known as “The Rule of Law” or “Due Process of Law”. Applied and determined by the judge before and during the trial. Due Process of Law can be found in both the State and US Constitutions and the State and US Supreme Court rulings. Generally speaking, the State is allowed to grant more rights and privileges than the US can.
The 4 th, 5 th, 6 th and 8 th Amendments Amendment IV The right of the people to be 1] secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, 2] against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and 3] no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, A] supported by oath or affirmation, B] particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb [double jeopardy]; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation. Amendment V
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed; to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have a compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense. Amendment VI
Amendment VIII Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
Criminal Cases Rules for Appeal of Decision If the State loses, the case is over [double jeopardy]. That is why in most trials, the State will charge the defendant with as many crimes as possible in order to win at least one of them. If the State wins, the defendant can appeal. On Appeal, the case title is Defendant v. State. Case goes to State Appellate Court. Whoever loses on appeal can appeal to State Supreme Court. Case title is Loser v. Winner Whoever loses can appeal to Federal Appeals Court. Whoever loses can appeal to U.S. Supreme Court.
Rules for Appeal of Decision When a side appeals, they ask the court a “question” about the process of the trial that they think the judge ruled on in error. The only questions that an appellate court hears are questions of procedure. They do not hear appeals on substantive questions. Each year the Supreme Court is asked to review about 6500-8000 cases. The Court “reviews” about 1,000 The Court grants “Cert” to about 80-110 of them. These cases are heard in oral argument.
Most often heard Due Process cases Legality of search Legality of seizure Severity of punishment “Miranda” issues Validity of law [Is the law constitutional?]
The Process of Appeal Both [all] sides in the suit file Briefs with the court. Amicus Curiae [friends of the court] are also filed at the request of both sides or at the request of the Court. Briefs are a written argument by each side that outlines the cases or laws they believe should apply to their case. Previous cases are known as “precedent”.
Your NOYS Final You will submit a Brief to the Supreme Court. The case you will argue is based on a problem with the jury in the trial. The teacher will provide the precedents and any necessary case law. Your Class Final You will submit a Brief to the Supreme Court. The case you will argue is based on a problem with the First Amendment. The teacher will provide the precedents and any necessary case law. You will also present your Brief in oral argument to the Court