Category Archives: Death Penalty

This Day in Supreme Court History—March 1, 2005

On this day in 2005, the Supreme Court decided Roper v. Simmons, one of its most important rulings on the issue of capital punishment. In Roper, the Court held that Eighth Amendment’s prohibition on “cruel and unusual punishments” forbids imposing the death penalty for a crime committed by someone under the age of 18. In … Continue reading This Day in Supreme Court History—March 1, 2005

This Day In Supreme Court History—January 10, 1984

On this day in 1984, Strickland v. Washington was argued at the Supreme Court. This case considered what it meant for a criminal defendant to have the “effective assistance” of counsel, which the Court had previously ruled the Sixth Amendment required. David Washington waived his right to a jury trial and pleaded guilty to three … Continue reading This Day In Supreme Court History—January 10, 1984

This Day in Supreme Court History: October 26, 2010

On this day in 2010, the Supreme Court vacated an emergency restraining order preventing the execution of Jeffrey Landrigan. Arizona executed him that day. Landrigan was convicted of first degree felony murder in 1990 and sentenced to death. After years of unsuccessful appeals, on September 15, 2010, the Arizona Supreme Court issued a warrant of … Continue reading This Day in Supreme Court History: October 26, 2010

Justice Sotomayor’s Death Penalty Dissent

This week is a quiet one at the Supreme Court. The justices will not hear any oral arguments and yesterday they released an Order List that included no new cases for the term’s docket. There was, however, one thing notable about this otherwise routine Order List: Justice Sotomayor, joined by Justice Ginsburg, issued a relatively … Continue reading Justice Sotomayor’s Death Penalty Dissent