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State v. Dixon

Supreme Court of Florida

July 26, 1973

Nos. 43521, 43460, 43478, 43473

Opinion

 [*2]  These cases pose several questions arising from the possibility of the imposition of the penalty of death pursuant to Fla.Stat. § 921.141, F.S.A., which became effective December 8, 1972.

Four cases are here consolidated on the issue of the constitutionality of the capital punishment statutes of the State of Florida. The case of State v. Setser is before this Court on the basis of a certified question from the Circuit Court of Dade County. The case of State v. Hunter and Moore is before this Court on the certified question of the Circuit Court for Duval County. The case of State v. Sheppard is before this Court on the certified question of the Circuit Court for Orange County. We have jurisdiction to determine the questions certified pursuant to Fla.Const.,  [*3]  art. V, § 3(b)(3), F.S.A. The case of State v. Dixon, Lester and Sawyer is before this Court on appeal from a decision of the Circuit Court for Dade County that Fla.Stat. §§ 775.082, 921.141, F.S.A., are unconstitutional. We have jurisdiction pursuant to Fla.Const., art. V, § 3(b)(1), F.S.A.

 [**3]  The question certified in the case of State v. Setser is:

"Whether the provisions of Chapter 72-724, Laws of Florida, 1972, prescribing the method and means of determining the penalty to be imposed in a capital case violates the Constitution of the State of Florida and the Constitution of the United States in light of the decision of the United States Supreme Court in the case of Furman v. Georgia, 408 U.S. 238, 32, 33 L. Ed. 2d 346, 92 S. Ct. 2726 (1972), and the decision of the Supreme Court of Florida in Donaldson v. Sack, (Florida 1972), 265 So.2d 499."

In the case of State v. Hunter and Moore, the questions certified are:

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283 So. 2d 1 *; 1973 Fla. LEXIS 4356 **

STATE of Florida, Appellant, v. Carl DIXON et al., Appellees. STATE of Florida, Plaintiff, v. Samuel D. SETSER, Defendant. STATE of Florida, Plaintiff, v. Fred Elson HUNTER and James Calvin Moore, Defendant. STATE of Florida, Plaintiff, v. Richard L. SHEPPARD, Defendant

CORE TERMS

death penalty, sentence, capital felony, death sentence, trial judge, mitigating circumstances, murder, cases, recommendation, life imprisonment, circumstances, aggravating circumstances, capital punishment, aggravating, felonies, death penalty statute, classification, perpetration, convicted, second degree, first degree, guilt, constitutes, rights, rape, enumerated, mitigating, questions, waived, circuit court

Criminal Law & Procedure, Sentencing, Capital Punishment, General Overview, Homicide, Manslaughter & Murder, Murder, Capital Murder, Penalties, Postconviction Proceedings, Clemency, Preliminary Proceedings, Arraignments, Procedural Matters, Constitutional Law, Bill of Rights, Fundamental Rights, Cruel & Unusual Punishment, Governments, Courts, Judges, Imposition of Sentence, Factors, Aggravating Circumstances, Mitigating Circumstances, Proportionality