Ring v. Arizona, 536 U.S. 584, 5 (2002)

Page:   Index   Previous  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  Next



Opinion of the Court

Andrew D. Hurwitz argued the cause for petitioner. With him on the briefs were John A. Stookey and Daniel L. Kaplan.

Janet Napolitano, Attorney General of Arizona, argued the cause for respondent. With her on the brief were Patrick Irvine, Solicitor General, Kent E. Cattani, and Robert L. Ellman and Kathleen P. Sweeney, Assistant Attorneys General.*

Justice Ginsburg delivered the opinion of the Court.

This case concerns the Sixth Amendment right to a jury trial in capital prosecutions. In Arizona, following a jury adjudication of a defendant's guilt of first-degree murder, the trial judge, sitting alone, determines the presence or absence of the aggravating factors required by Arizona law for imposition of the death penalty.

In Walton v. Arizona, 497 U. S. 639 (1990), this Court held that Arizona's sentencing scheme was compatible with the Sixth Amendment because the additional facts found by the judge qualified as sentencing considerations, not as "element[s] of the offense of capital murder." Id., at 649. Ten years later, however, we decided Apprendi v. New Jersey, 530 U. S. 466 (2000), which held that the Sixth Amendment does not permit a defendant to be "expose[d] . . . to a penalty

*Briefs of amici curiae urging affirmance were filed for the State of Alabama et al. by Bill Pryor, Attorney General of Alabama, Nathan A. Forrester, Solicitor General, and A. Vernon Barnett IV and Michael B. Billingsley, Deputy Solicitors General, joined by the Attorneys General for their respective States as follows: Ken Salazar of Colorado, M. Jane Brady of Delaware, Robert A. Butterworth of Florida, Alan G. Lance of Idaho, Steve Carter of Indiana, Mike Moore of Mississippi, Mike McGrath of Montana, Don Stenberg of Nebraska, Frankie Sue Del Papa of Nevada, D. Michael Fisher of Pennsylvania, Charles M. Condon of South Carolina, Mark L. Shurtleff of Utah, and Jerry W. Kilgore of Virginia; for Arizona Voice for Crime Victims, Inc., et al. by Steve Twist and Douglas E. Beloof; and for the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation by Kent S. Scheidegger.

Page:   Index   Previous  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  Next

Last modified: October 4, 2007