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Federalism & Separation of Powers

Supreme Court Round-Up

Sacramento Lawyers Chapter Wednesday, July 20, 12:00 PMCalifornia Chamber of Commerce
1215 K Street, 14th Floor, California Room,
Sacramento, CA 95814

Speakers:

  • Bradley A. Benbrook, Founding Partner, Benbrook Law Group

  • Anastasia Boden, PLF Staff Attorney

  • Jonathan Wood, PLF Staff Attorney

     

     

Racial Pretexts in Peremptory Jury Strikes: The Impact of Foster v. Chatman

Criminal Law & Procedure Practice Group Courthouse Steps Teleforum Tuesday, May 24, 03:00 PMFederalist Society Teleforum Conference Call

The Supreme Court issued its 7-1 ruling in Foster v. Chatman on Monday, reversing the Supreme Court of Georgia and remanding the case. Foster was convicted of murder and sentenced to death three decades ago by an all-white jury. The prosecutor struck all of the black jurors and had plans to do so before the voir dire began. The prosecution presented several race-neutral reasons for striking the jurors, and the Georgia courts ruled against the Batson claim. Foster later gained access to the prosecution's jury-selection notes that showed some racial pretext and used them for a renewed Batson claim. The Georgia courts rejected the claim as barred by state res judicata. Chief Justice Roberts wrote for the majority of the court finding that the court did still have jurisdiction and impermissible racial pretext was apparent for at least two of the state's peremptory strikes. Justice Thomas wrote a firm dissent where he doubted the court's jurisdiction. This Teleforum will discuss the ramifications of this decision on the future of Batson deference, res judicata, and how this case might affect capital appeals pending throughout the nation.

Featuring:

  • Prof. Joseph L. Hoffmann, Harry Pratter Professor of Law and Director for Strategic Projects, Indiana University Maurer School of Law