CALIFORNIA V. HAMILTON, 476 U. S. 1301 (1986)

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U.S. Supreme Court

California v. Hamilton, 476 U.S. 1301 (1986)

California v. Hamilton

No. A-805

Decided May 6, 1986

476 U.S. 1301


California's application to stay enforcement of the California Supreme Court's judgment invalidating respondent's death sentence is granted. The State Supreme Court's judgment was based on its holdings that the failure to properly instruct the jury at respondent's murder trial on the issue of intent to kill violated his right to due process under Sandstrom v. Montana, 442 U. S. 510, and that such error was not harmless. The State seeks the stay so that it can petition for certiorari to raise the question of the proper constitutional standard for determining prejudice with regard to Sandstrom errors. Since the outcome here may well be affected by the decision in another, pending case, it is likely that a majority of this Court would not want to dispose of the petition for certiorari in this case before a decision is rendered in such other case.

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