Document Type

Sheppard v. Maxwell, United States Supreme Court, No. 490


October Term, 1965

Case Title

Sheppard v. Maxwell, U.S. Court of Appeals Sixth District, 1965

Box Number


Item Number



Sheppard v. Maxwell, case document, petition for Writ of Certiorari, U.S. Supreme Court, impaneling of jury, Fourth Amendment, Fifth Amendment, Sixth Amendment, Fourteenth Amendment


The Writ of Certiorari included eleven questions presented for the Court:

1. Did the pre-trial publicity prejudice the community so that no fair or impartial jury could have been impaneled?

2. Did the trial judge fail to adequately protect the petit jury, once empaneled, from prejudicial extrinsic influences?

3. Did the trial judge fail to adequately interrogate the jurors when they had been exposed to prejudicial extrinsic matter through the news media during trial?

4. Did the trial judge fail to maintain constitutionally adequate decorum in the courtroom during trial?

5. Did the trial judge deny petitioner a public trial by assigning nearly all of the seats in the courtroom to newsmen?

6. Did the trial judge, in the special circumstances of this case, violate petitioner's constitutional right to a fair and impartial judge by failing to recuse himself despite his firm belief, undisclosed to petitioner, that petitioner was "guilty as hell" and that the case against him was "open and shut"?

7. Did the trial judge violate petitioner's federal constitutional right against self-incrimination by receiving evidence that petitioner had refused to take a lie detector test and truth serum?

8. Did the action of the bailiffs who permitted jurors to telephone outsiders during the course of deliberations in violation of Ohio law violate petitioner's federal constitutional right to a fair and impartial trial?

9. Did the court below deprive petitioner of proper review of other claimed federal constitutional violations?

10. Did the court below improperly foreclose without litigation the question of the sufficiency of the evidence?

11. Did the court below erroneously rule that no combination of individual errors, none of which rises to the stature of a federal constitutional violation, can in the aggregate show that the state court trial fell short of the requirements of due process of law?



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.