Smith's Criminal Case Compendium

Smith's Criminal Case Compendium


This compendium includes significant criminal cases by the U.S. Supreme Court & N.C. appellate courts, Nov. 2008 – Present. Selected 4th Circuit cases also are included.

Jessica Smith prepared case summaries Nov. 2008-June 4, 2019; later summaries are prepared by other School staff.


Navigate using the table of contents to the left or by using the search box below. Use quotations for an exact phrase search. A search for multiple terms without quotations functions as an “or” search. Not sure where to start? The 5 minute video tutorial offers a guided tour of main features – Launch Tutorial (opens in new tab).

E.g., 02/05/2023
E.g., 02/05/2023

Due process required that a Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice recuse himself from the capital defendant’s post-conviction challenge where the justice had been the district attorney who gave his official approval to seek the death penalty in the case. The Court stated: “under the Due Process...

Caperton v. Massey Coal Co., Inc., 556 U.S. 868 (June 8, 2009)

A violation of due process occurred when West Virginia Supreme Court justice Brent Benjamin denied a recusal motion. The Supreme Court of West Virginia reversed a trial court judgment which had entered a jury verdict of $50 million against A.T. Massey Coal Co., Inc. Five justices heard the case...

The defendant failed to demonstrate grounds for recusal. The defendant argued that recusal was warranted based on the trial judge’s comments at various hearings and on the fact that “the trial court was often dismissive of defense counsel’s efforts and made a number of rulings unfavorable to the...

Show Table of Contents