Yahoo! News, September 30, 2009
The Supreme Court will decide whether a man’s murder conviction should have been thrown out because there were too few African Americans in a county’s jury pool in Michigan.
State officials are asking the high court to overturn a decision by the 6th U.S. Court of Appeals in Cincinnati.
That court threw out the murder conviction of Diapolis Smith for shooting a man in Grand Rapids in 1991.
Smith, who is black, was found guilty by an all-white jury. He said his constitutional right to a jury that represents the community was violated because there were only three blacks in the pool of 60 to 100 prospective jurors.
Blacks in the city made up 85 percent of all blacks in the county.
The case is Berghuis v. Smith, 08-1402.