Questionable Motive?

February 17, 2014

  • 350H Sentencing and Punishment
  • 350HVIII The Death Penalty
  • 350HVIII(G) Proceedings
  • 350HVIII(G)3 Hearing
  • 350Hk1780 Conduct of Hearing
  • 350Hk1780(2) k. Arguments and conduct of counsel.

350H Sentencing and PunishmentDefendant was not prejudiced by prosecutor’s allegedly improper statement in closing argument in sentencing phase of capital murder trial, after minister testified for defendant, that “there’s always a preacher” in trial for heinous crime, and that “people try to use Almighty God just like a monkey wrench, when you’re in trouble, you’ve got to have it”; although prosecutor should not have referenced his experience and other cases not in evidence, thrust of his statements was to focus jury’s attention on whether defendant’s invocation of religion was genuine, which was legitimate subject for prosecutor to address.

Cargill v. Turpin, 120 F.3d 1366 (11th Cir. 1997)