Rutherford Institute Asks Supreme Court to Safeguard 6th Amendment, Prevent Judges from Ignoring ‘Not Guilty’ Jury Verdicts in Favor of Harsher Sentences
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Committed to ensuring the continued vitality of the Sixth Amendment’s guarantee to a jury trial in criminal cases, attorneys for The Rutherford Institute have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case of Ball et al. v. United States. In asking the Court to hear the case in which a jury found three men not guilty of conspiracy drug charges, only to have the judge ignore their ruling and sentence them as harshly as if they had been found guilty, Institute attorneys argue for the need to restore the role of the jury from a minimal one to a central role. Moreover, Rutherford Institute attorneys point out that the Sixth Amendment requires that all persons charged with criminal offenses should only be put at risk for increased punishment and imprisonment on the basis of facts found by a jury of their peers employing the venerable “beyond a reasonable doubt” standard.