segunda-feira, 30 de maio de 2011

Legal English: Vocab Review / Change of Venue Motion

The defendant, Joshua Komisarjevsky, is currently awaiting trial on a multicount information, including several _____ of capital _____ .  The case has _____ intense public interest. On November 8, 2010, the jury in State v. Hayes _____ special verdicts _____ a sentence of death for the co-defendant.

counts      returned      mandating      felony     aroused

On February 4, 2011, Komisarjevsky ( _____ referred to as “the defendant”) filed the motion for change of _____ now _____ the court.  The motion is based on what it terms “the unprecedented, _____publicity surrounding this case, as _____ by the recent trial of Mr. Komisarjevsky's co-defendant, Steven Hayes.”

hereinafter     prejudicial      before    exacerbated      venue

At the hearing, Steven Penrod, a professor of psychology at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice _____ that a poll he conducted found the highest level of “case _____” he had ever seen. A smaller, but still substantial, percentage of _____ expressed an opinion that Komisarjevsky was guilty. 70.6% of his New Haven _____ reported that they could _____ a verdict based only on the evidence. A second defense witness submitted a flash drive containing 1,808 media reports concerning the cases _____ from the Internet, showing the cases have been _____ reported.
respondents(2)     widely       testified       render     culled       recognition

“Any judge _____ a criminal session of the Superior Court may, _____ motion, order any criminal case _____ in the court to be transferred to the superior court for any other judicial district if extraordinary local _____ will prevent a fair trial.” The defendant _____ the burden of showing that he could not _____ receive a fair and impartial trial. The trial court exercises its _____ in deciding whether to grant such a change of venue.

holding     discretion     prejudice     otherwise       upon     bears      pending

A defendant cannot rely, however, on the _____ fact of extensive pretrial news _____ to establish the existence of _____ prejudicial publicity and must demonstrate that the publicity was so inflammatory or _____ that it created a trial atmosphere _____ corrupted by press _____. The Supreme Courts of Connecticut and of the United States have provided _____ on this issue.

guidance      mere     inaccurate      coverage(2)     inherently     utterly

Skilling _____ a four-factor test in determining _____ a “presumption of prejudice,” like that found in Rideau, exists in a given case:  (1) “the size and characteristics of the community in which the crime occurred,” (2) _____ news stories about the defendant “contained [a] confession or other _____ prejudicial information of the type readers or viewers could not reasonably be expected to _____,” (3) the _____ of time between the crime and the trial, and (4) the _____ verdict of the jury.

lapse       employs        shut from sight       whether(2)       actual        blatantly

First, the New Haven Judicial District has a population substantially _____ than that of Rideau's parish. It consists of thirteen towns with a significant diversity of residents. “Given this large, diverse _____ of potential jurors, the suggestion that 12 impartial individuals could not be _____ is hard to _____.” Second, media reports on the cases in question have not focused on “_____ of guilt.” Some of Komisarjevksy's post-arrest statements to the police and certain diaries apparently authored by him in prison were _____ into evidence in the penalty phase of State v. Hayes, and these admissions generated news reports at the time. But these admissions do not appear to have been particularly _____ in the public mind.

pool       admission[s]       greater      admitted        sustain       salient      empanelled

Third, by the time the jury in this case is _____, over four years will have _____ since the crime. This prong of the Skilling analysis is made more complicated by the fact that Komisarjevsky's co-defendant was tried in the fall of 2009, and the Hayes trial _____ generated publicity unfavorable to Komisarjevsky. But, as discussed in the analysis of Skilling, _____, this publicity has not created an _____ impression on the public with respect to Komisarjevsky's _____ admissions.

plainly        impaneled        actual       supra         indelible        elapsed

It is significant that the jury in State v. Hayes, which had also been exposed to considerable pretrial publicity, _____ Hayes of one _____ of arson.  This fact serves as a _____ to defense suggestions in this case that, in spite of their _____ and instructions, jurors' verdicts are simply a function of pretrial publicity.  In fact, as Skilling points out, “it is a _____ of [our justice] system that jurors will _____ their preconceptions when they enter the courtroom and decide cases based on the evidence presented.”

oaths      acquitted     premise       count     set aside       counterweight

The court finds that the defendant has failed to establish a _____ of prejudice requiring a change of venue _____ to the beginning of the voir dire process.  The circumstances of this case _____ require the court “to conduct a _____ voir dire in which _____ jurors' attitudes about the case [are] closely _____.” Connecticut law provides a particularly _____ voir dire process. The goal of the voir dire process is not to select twelve jurors “with empty heads. It is sufficient if the jurors can _____ their impressions or opinions and _____ a verdict based on the evidence presented in court.”

thorough      presumption     scrutinized       prospective       searching          prior      plainly       render        lay aside

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