Gideon Vs Wainwright Case Study

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Gideon v. Wainwright was a Supreme Court case in 1963 where the court ruled that the courts had to provide counsel to the party being charged if they could not afford one. Clarence Earl Gideon was charged with breaking and entering in the Bay Harbor Pool Room in Panama City, Florida. He could not afford an attorney and the court denied his request for them to provide him one since it was not a capital offense, in that time courts were not required to provide an attorney to a party on trail if the crime was not a capital offense. Gideon was found guilty and sentenced to five years in prison. He originally sent his request that his trail was unfair to the Florida Supreme Court; it was denied. His next move was to send his request to the Supreme …show more content…

He dropped out of school in third grade then ran away from home. After running away he spent his young adult life in and out of jail for minor crimes. His arrest were mostly small theft crimes. Just about every time he got locked up, he managed to break out of jail or prison. At the time of his arrest, he had nearly cleaned up his act except for drinking and gambling. That made his case believable to the court because the robbery occurred at a pool hall and Gideon had been seen there earlier that night, probably drunk. All his troubles in his youth made it easy to convince the jury that he was guilty. The police arrested Gideon going by what this guy outside the pool room said. The witness said that he saw Gideon break in and watched him steal things through the window. Gideon was arrested after a man at the crime scene said he saw him break in and also saw him stealing things from outside the window. The police arrested him on charges of breaking and entering with intent to commit a misdemeanor which was a felony in the state of Florida. In the court room Gideon requested that the …show more content…

Betts v. Brady was violating people's Sixth Amendment, so Gideon v. Wainwright is important because it helped protect a right every American has to a the Sixth Amendment, “the right to a speedy, fair trial, an attorney if the accused person wants one...” If Gideon v. Wainwright had never happened average Joe would still be having to represent himself if he could not afford an attorney and the court denied the party of trials request. In my opinion I think the Supreme Court made the right decision. Gideon only had a third grade education, was an average person, and even though the evidence was stacked against Gideon, I think the court locked up the wrong person. Gideon did not stand a snowballs chance in hell to defend himself; the court should have provided counsel. Hardly anybody off the street could defend themselves in a court case like that. It was even more unfair for Gideon because he dropped out of school in third grade. W ith Gideon's troubled youth, the evidence made it look like Gideon had gone back into his old habits of committing a thief crime. W ith all the evidence Gideon stacked up against him without a professional to defend him, he was screwed. His trial was completely unfair. According to the movie I watched in eighth grade on Gideon

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