SINGER V. UNITED STATES, 380 U. S. 24 (1965)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Singer v. United States, 380 U.S. 24 (1965)

Singer v. United States

No. 42

Argued November 18, 1961

Decided March 1, 1965

380 U.S. 24


Petitioner, a defendant in a federal criminal mail fraud case, claims that he had an absolute right to be tried by a judge alone if he considered such a trial to be to his advantage.

Held: Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 23(a) sets forth a reasonable procedure governing proffered waivers of jury trials. A defendant's only constitutional right concerning the method of trial is to an impartial trial by jury. Although he may waive his right to trial by jury, Patton v. United State, 281 U. S. 276, there is no constitutional impediment to conditioning a waiver of this right on the consent of the prosecuting attorney and the trial judge when, if either refuses to consent, the result is that the defendant is subject to an impartial trial by jury -- the very thing that the Constitution guarantees him. Pp. 380 U. S. 238.

326 F.2d 32 affirmed.

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