United States v. Alfred Velazquez (9th Cir. July 2021)
Juries, Ninth Circuit, Prosecutorial Misconduct, Recent Circuit Cases|
The Ninth Circuit vacated a defendant’s conviction for importing drugs based on the prosecutor’s statements in closing regarding the standard of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The Court held that the prosecutor’s comparison of the standard to the confidence a person might need to have in eating a meal without fear of sickness or traveling to court without worrying about a car accident mischaracterized and “trivialized” the standard and caused substantial prejudice.