SIMPSON V. FLORIDA, 403 U. S. 384 (1971)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Simpson v. Florida, 403 U.S. 384 (1971)

Simpson v. Florida

No. 1267

Decided June 14, 1971

403 U.S. 384


A store manager and a customer were robbed by two armed men. Petitioner was tried and convicted of robbing the manager, but, on retrial after reversal, he was acquitted. He was then charged with robbing the customer, his motion to quash the information on double jeopardy grounds was overruled, and he was found guilty. Each jury verdict was a general one. The District Court of Appeal, after the decision in Ashe v. Swenson, 397 U. S. 436, held as a matter of law that, while the acquittal at the second trial entitled petitioner to invoke collateral estoppel, his conviction at the first trial gave rise to a "double collateral estoppel," allowing the State to rely on the finding of the jury at the first trial that he was a participant in the robbery. The State Supreme Court denied review.

Held: As stated in Ashe, supra, "mutuality" is not an ingredient of the collateral estoppel rule imposed on the States by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments; and unless the jury verdict in the second trial "could have [been] grounded . . . upon an issue other than that which the defendant seeks to foreclose from consideration," the double jeopardy provision vitiates petitioner's conviction.

Certiorari granted; 237 So.2d 341, vacated and remanded.


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