CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Friday, April 18, 2014

Sheppard on Double Jeopardy and Mandating Partial Verdicts in "Acquit First" Cases

James Robert Sheppard III has posted Double Jeopardy Blues: Why in Light of Blueford v. Arkansas States Should Mandate Partial Verdicts in 'Acquit First' Cases (Mississippi Law Journal, Vol. 83, Forthcoming) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

Prior to Blueford v. Arkansas, state courts were split regarding whether the Double Jeopardy clause requires a trial judge to issue a partial verdict when a jury has has become deadlocked regarding a lesser included charge after being given “acquit first” transition instruction. The Court in Blueford recently held that in the same circumstances, a defendant’s double jeopardy rights are not violated when a trial judge refuses to issue a partial verdict. Accordingly, this comment advocates that in light of Blueford, states give effect to the jury’s decision to not convict the defendant of the greater charge by requiring a trial judge grant a defendant’s motion for partial verdict, thereby providing broader double jeopardy protections than now constitutionally required.

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