Leland v. Oregon
|Leland v. Oregon|
|Argued January 29, 1952|
Decided June 9, 1952
|Full case name||Leland v. Oregon|
72 S. Ct. 1002; 96 L. Ed. 1302; 1952 U.S. LEXIS 1955
|Prior history||Appeal from the Supreme Court of Oregon|
|The Court upheld the constitutionality of placing the burden of persuasion on the defendant when they argue an insanity defense in a criminal trial.|
|Majority||Clark, joined by Vinson, Reed, Douglas, Jackson, Burton, Minton|
|Dissent||Frankfurter, joined by Black|
Leland v. Oregon, 343 U.S. 790 (1952), was a United States Supreme Court case in which the Court upheld the constitutionality of placing the burden of persuasion on the defendant when they argue an insanity defense in a criminal trial.
The defendant was convicted of killing a fifteen-year-old girl in Multnomah County. After being arrested for auto theft, the defendant asked for a homicide officer, verbally confessed to the murder, took the police to the scene of the crime, and signed a written confession. After being indicted, he then spoke to a lawyer for the first time. At trial, a jury convicted him and recommended the death penalty.
Oregon law required the defendant required proof of insanity beyond a reasonable doubt. The case claimed that the "statute in effect requires a defendant pleading insanity to establish his innocence by disproving beyond a reasonable doubt elements of the crime necessary to a verdict of guilty, and that the statute is therefore violative of that due process of law secured by the Fourteenth Amendment."