Thursday, January 20, 2005

State of the Judiciary 2005

Here's the link to Chief Justice Shepard's State of the Judiciary message delivered yesterday. Possibly of Blakely interest is the opening paragraph of the section titled, "Rebuilding the American Jury":

Something else that’s needed attention for a long time is the way we manage that birthright of all Americans, trial by jury. Most schoolchildren know that when the nobles confronted King John on the field at Runnymeade in 1215 that one of the promises Magna Carta contained was the right to a trial by your peers, but these days the legal press is running stories about the disappearance of the American jury trial. We’ve too long taken it for granted.

(Emphasis added). One reading of Blakely, of course, is that jury trials have disappeared with respect to some facts necessary to increased punishment. It will be interesting to see where Chief Justice Shepard comes down in Heath and Smylie with respect to jury trials.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

See "DUI and the Disappearing Right to Jury Trial" at See also "Arizona Denies Right to Jury Trials in DUI Cases" at, wherein a few days ago the Arizona Supreme Court adopted a modified Blanton standard which resulted in denying jury trials primarily in DUI cases.