Skip to comments.Judge Dismisses Denver D.A.'s Unconstitutional Jury Tampering Charges ( jury nullification )
Posted on 12/17/2015 9:06:06 AM PST by george76
Mitch Morrissey tried to imprison activists for passing out jury nullification pamphlets.
Last August, Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey charged two local activists, Mark Iannicelli and Eric Brandt, with seven felonies each for passing out jury nullification pamphlets at the Lindsey-Flanigan Courthouse. Morrissey continued to pursue those charges even after conceding that such activity is protected by the First Amendment. When I asked Lynn Kimbrough, Morrissey's public information officer, what Iannicelli and Brandt had done that crossed the line from constitutionally protected speech to felonious jury tampering, she refused to say. That's probably because Morrissey had no case, as confirmed yesterday when Denver District Court Judge Kenneth Plotz dismissed the charges against both men, which he concluded violated their First Amendment rights.
What happened here is pretty clear: Morrissey abused his office to punish people for speech that offended him. He persisted in that effort even after it became abundantly clear that the charges were unconstitutional, as when a federal judge in Denver ruled that activists have a First Amendment right to do exactly what Iannicelli and Brandt were arrested for doing: passing out literature arguing that jurors have the authority to judge the law as well as the facts ... It would be perceived as a losing battle [by] a first-year law student.
Yet Morrissey is not alone in seeking to imprison people for defending principles he abhors. Last month Michigan activist Keith Wood was arrested for handing out jury nullification literature outside the Mecosta County courthouse. Wood was charged with jury tampering,
(Excerpt) Read more at reason.com ...
I would ask any potential juror if he believed in "nullification" and if he said yes I would have him removed for cause.
Once again it is a bunch of nut jobs imagining in their lunacy they are striking a blow for justice, in reality they are agents of chaos and if their ideas spread we will be irreparably harmed. They should be kept off juries and is they conceal their belief in nullification to get on they should be punished.
May each nullifier be tried for their life, liberty and property by a nullifier who believes he knows better than everyone else.
Sorry, but if a law goes against the clear meaning of the Constituion, either federal or state, I am in no way obligated to adhere to it if I am on a jury. Otherwise, why have juries? Let judges do the determination of guilty or now.
Let’s say there was a law, upheld by the Supreme Court, that said a person could be acquitted of a criminal charge yet sentenced, using a lower standard of evidence, as if he was convicted of that charge. Do you think that violates the Constitutional prohibition on double jeopardy?
Simply remove the “nullifier” from the prospective pool or challenge them for cause. Jury nullification nuts like marijuana addicts cannot be reasoned with. Just what we need in our country is some individual nut who believes he can privately determine what is or is not constitutional. The social agreement, in general terms, dictates we surrender our private judgement in return for legislation by an authorized body. I would not have a nullifier on any jury hearing my case. Jurors decide facts the legislature and judges give the law.
Give me a citation to an actual case setting forth the facts you state.
I asked you a question - what would you do if you were on a jury in that sitution?
Yeah, because we all know how great a job the Supreme Court does on that. /s
Indeed he does.
Someone correct me if I am wrong but I thought a Government official is not protected from being sued for intentionally violating someone’s civil rights under the color of law.
Sue his ass off.
And a judge is lying to the ury when he tells them that the Judge decides what the law is and the jury is required to apply the facts to the judges instructionsas to the law.
The US Supreme court has ruled that the jury is judge of both the facts and the law.
When we have facts that your question is concerns a real situation in the real world then I’ll worry about it.
Then elect good people who will pass on Supreme Court nominees.
In certain circumstances he is the party determining facts and law, for example a judge trial. Even then most judges will decide better than a layman.
US v Putra
You do not even know how to cite a case, yet you propose to tell people what is or is not constitutional. Give me the full cite please.
Jury Nullification has been around in Anglo-American jurisprudence since the 17th Century. The foundational case was the Bushell case where a jury refused to convict William Penn ( of Pennsylvania fame). Many colonial juries refused to convict on the basis that laws imposed by King George were unjust.( viz The Zenger case argued by Andrew Hamilton)
Chief Justice John Jay in Georgia v's Brailsford affirmed the right of the Jury to judge the law and the facts. In a rare jury trial before the supreme court he said the following:- " It may not be amiss here gentlemen to remind you of the good old rule that on questions of fact , it is the province of the jury to decide , on questions of law, it is the province of the court to decide. But it must be observed that by the same law , which recognizes this reasonable distribution of jurisdiction, you have nevertheless a right to take upon yourselves to judge of both, and to determine the law as well as the fact in controversy.... For, as on the one hand it is presumed that juries are the best judges of fact, it is on the other hand ,presumable that the court are the best judges of the law. But stillboth objects are lawfully within your power of decision." ,
Was John Jay a" loony"?
I gave you the citation exactly as it is referenced. Try Google, it comes right up. Also review the related US v Watts.
"Hate crime" charges come quickly to mind.If the evidence shows that a white guy assaulted a black for no good reason (and being black surely isn't a good reason) I'll vote guilty on the assault charge(s).But I won't vote guilty on any charge connected to the *motive* for the assault.
You are not John Jay. And yes Andy not every founders words are sacrosanct. Read The Virginia and Kentucky resolutions by Madison and Jefferson.
Maybe you should read the literature at fija.org before you judge the constitutional duties of jurors.
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