A Court Case Decision.

Two of the attached files will assist you in “briefing” a court case decision.

A case “brief” is a summary of the case by highlighting the Facts, the Issue, the Conclusion, and the Analysis. For the Facts section of a brief, you are highlighting the key or important facts that are necessary to the Court in making its decision.

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For the Facts section, you only include the facts that are necessary to remember the case for the issue at hand. In the copy of Destertrain, I used phrases because there are multiple defendants with different facts for what the Court was considering. For your reference, the Destertrain case is the one used on page 31, question 2, of Chapter 1 Case Analysis.
The Issue is what we lawyers consider the focal point question of the case. In the Destertrain case, it was whether the law that addressed sleeping in vehicles was void for vagueness and therefore unlawful. The Issue is framed in the form of the question. The Conclusion is a short answer to the issue ~ typically yes or no or it is phrased as the issue but in the form of a sentence.

In the Analysis section, you are explaining the rationale for why the Court decided the issue the way it did.

In law school, we use briefs to help us remember all the cases we study and be able to apply them in our one exam at the semester’s end. I used the form you see here because I put them on yellow paper so I never threw them out by accident and it allowed me to write the professor’s comments in the column on the right.

The other example that I have given you is Griffin v State. It is found in Chapter 3, on page 83, question 2.

You have two weeks to complete this first homework assignment ~ it is due Friday, September 11 before 6:00 p.m. The assignment is for you to read the third attachment ~ State v Amos ~ and to create your own case brief. You will drop that into the drop box set up in Week 2 for the assignment.

You don’t have to set up your assignment with the type of form I use (and provided as an attachment), but you do have to use the four topic headings. You also want to be sure you use complete sentences, like I did in Griffin. But you also want to answer all four sections ~ Griffin for me is just an easy case to remember the analysis by the court.


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