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Version 3.8
Copyright 2001-2008
JusticeForWoody.net site last revised 1/17/06
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Killing Reaction Cases Evidence Analysis Media Woody

Types of Legal Cases

Given the legal system in the United States, there are three distinct avenues for legal action against those responsible for the killing of Woody. They are:

  • a prosecution by the county or state of individuals involved in the killing for criminal homicide, and possibly of individuals involved in the training of the killers for criminal negligence.
  • a prosecution by the U. S. Justice Department of individuals involved in the killing for violations of the victim's civil liberties.
  • a wrongful death lawsuit by the victim's family against the shooters and the town of Brattleboro.
The first and second avenues are criminal in nature whereas the third is civil in nature. These three avenues are independent insofar as the outcome of in any one will not affect the disposition of either of the other two. The prohibition against double jeopardy enshrined in the 5th Amendment to the United States Constitution holds that one cannot be tried a second time for the same offense one was convicted for or acquitted of. This applies only to criminal cases, and does not make prosecutions under the first and second avenues exclusive because they are based on different offenses, even though they stem from the same event.

page last modified: 2005-12-14