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NCJ Number: 52042 Find in a Library
Title: GARDNER V FLORIDA - THE APPLICATION OF DUE PROCESS TO SENTENCING PROCEDURES
Journal: VIRGINIA LAW REVIEW  Volume:63  Issue:7  Dated:(NOVEMBER 1977)  Pages:1281-1298
Author(s): W A MCDANIEL JR
Corporate Author: Virginia Law Review Assoc
University of Virginia
School of Law
United States of America
Date Published: 1977
Page Count: 18
Sponsoring Agency: Virginia Law Review Assoc
Charlottesville, VA 22901
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A U.S. SUPREME COURT DECISION THAT MAY EXTEND DUE PROCESS REQUIREMENTS TO NONCAPITAL SENTENCING PROCEDURES IS ANALYZED.
Abstract: IN GARDNER V. FLORIDA, THE COURT DECIDED THAT DEFENDANTS MAY NOT BE SENTENCED TO DEATH ON THE BASIS OF INFORMATION THAT THEY HAVE HAD NO OPPORTUNITY TO EXPLAIN OR DENY. RATHER THAN RELYING ON EIGHTH AMENDMENT REASONING AS OTHER CAPITAL CASES HAD, A PLURALITY IN THE GARDNER DECISION USED DUE PROCESS ANALYSIS TO INVALIDATE NONDISCLOSURE OF A PRESENTENCE REPORT. BY USING THE DUE PROCESS CLAUSE INSTEAD OF THE EIGHTH AMENDMENT AND BY STATING OUTRIGHT THAT DUE PROCESS APPLIES TO SENTENCING, THE PLURALITY MAY HAVE OVERCOME THE SELF-LIMITING NATURE OF EARLIER CASES REQUIRING SPECIAL SENTENCING PROCEDURES IN CAPITAL CASES. THE DUE PROCESS REASONING AND BALANCING TEST USED IN GARDNER MAY ALLOW DEFENDENTS FACING POTENTIAL PRISON SENTENCES OR FINES TO CLAIM LIBERTY OR PROPERTY INTERESTS SUFFICIENT TO REQUIRE PROCEDURAL PROTECTIONS. IF LIBERTY OR PROPERTY INTERESTS ARE SUFFICIENT TO REQUIRE ADDITIONAL PROCEDURES AT SENTENCING, COURTS MAY TURN TO THE MINIMUM DUE PROCESS GUARANTEES OUTLINED BY THE COURT IN MORRISSEY V. BREWER (A DECISION REGARDING DUE PROCESS RIGHTS OF PAROLEES FACED WITH REVOCATION). HOWEVER, THE COURTS MAY GO FURTHER THAN THESE MINIMUM PROCEDURES AND TURN TO THE REASONING AND PROCEDURES DELINEATED IN CAPITAL PUNISHMENT CASES, OR DEVELOP ADDITIONAL PROCEDURES OF THEIR OWN. THE GARDNER DECISION MAY PROVE TO BE SIMPLY ANOTHER CAPITAL PUNISHMENT CASE WITH NO FURTHER IMPLICATIONS. HOWEVER, A DECISION LIMITING THE BROAD LANGUAGE IN GARDNER WILL BE NEEDED BEFORE THE REACH OF THE GARDNER DECISION NECESSARILY MUST BE CONSTRUED NARROWLY. IN THE MEANTIME, GARDNER WILL BE USED BY DEFENSE ATTORNEYS TO CHALLENGE EXISTING SENTENCING PROCEDURES AND MAY BE USED TO ALTER THOSE PROCEDURES. (AUTHOR ABSTRACT MODIFIED--LKM)
Index Term(s): Florida; Judicial decisions; Right to Due Process; Rights of the accused; Sentencing/Sanctions; US Supreme Court
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=52042

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