Choose a case from your state that involves civil rights or civil liberties that was decided by the United States Supreme Court. If your state does not have a case that was decided by the United States Supreme Court, choose a civil rights case from another state for which the United States Supreme Court issued a decision.
Civil rights refers to equal social opportunities under the law. It gives you these freedoms such as the right to vote, the right to public education, or a fair trial, among other things, regardless of your wealth or race. Civil liberties mean freedom of religion, equal treatment and due process under the law, and the right to privacy.
A. Summary of the Case
In one or two paragraphs, provide a general overview of the case that serves as a snapshot of what the case is about and how it ended up in your state high court. A summary is using your words to write a brief history of the case. Do not give your opinion or your interpretation but stick to the facts only.
B: Case Outline
Your court case outline should include:
- Title: Name of the case
- Facts of the case: Provide key facts involving the case.
- History of the case: What legal action was taken based on what your state laws say about this case?
- Legal questions: What were the legal issues the court had to decide?
- Decision or holdings: Did the court decide for the plaintiff or the defendant? Explain the reason behind the decision?
- Verdict and opinion (judgement): What were the concurring and dissenting opinions? How many judges decided for the defendant and how many justices decided against the defendant? What was the final verdict from the judge or the jury, if it was a jury trial?
What was the resulting impact of the ruling? How did the citizens of your state benefit from it? Was this a good decision?