Supreme Court double jeopardy ruling

[JURIST] In a 5-4 split on Tuesday the US Supreme Court upheld the death sentence of a Pennsylvania man who had been tried twice for the same offense. Read Sattazahn v. Pennsylvania [decision syllabus] - Opinion by Scalia [opinion text], Concurrence by O'Connor [concurrence text] and Dissent by Ginsburg [dissent text]. David Sattazahn's first trial ended in jury deadlock over a death sentence, resulting in life imprisonment under PA law. He sought a retrial on unrelated grounds; the second jury sent him to death row. The Court ruled that with no previous acquittal neither the Fifth nor Fourteenth Amendments precluded Pennsylvania from seeking a death sentence for a second time. More on the case from the Associated Press [AP report] and the Medill School of Journalism, Northwestern University [case backgrounder].



 

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