United States Sixth Circuit

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Smith v. Bradshaw, 07-4305

A denial of a request for habeas relief by a defendant convicted and sentenced to death for raping and murdering a six-month-old baby is affirmed where: 1) defendant's claim that the prosecutor improperly commented on his failure to testify during the guilt phase is procedurally defaulted and defendant cannot excuse the default through the ineffectiveness of counsel because he cannot show that counsel's failure to object to this one comment -- thereby drawing attention to it -- was deficient; 2) defendant's claim that the penalty instructions violated Caldwell v. Mississippi is procedurally defaulted; 3) defendant's counsel was not ineffective for failing to object to the penalty instructions; and 4) a state court's analysis under Beck was reasonable as it is well established that a lesser-included offense instruction is not required where the facts of a murder so strongly indicate intent to kill that the jury could not rationally have a reasonable doubt as to the defendant's intent.

Appellate Information

  • Argued 07/29/2009
  • Decided 01/19/2010
  • Published 01/19/2010

Judges

  • Before: BATCHELDER, Chief Judge; and BOGGS and GILMAN, Circuit Judges.

Court

  • United States Sixth Circuit

Counsel

  • For Appellees:
  • ARGUED:Joseph E. Wilhelm, Federal Public Defender's Office, Cleveland, Ohio, for Appellant. Charles L. Wille, Office of the Ohio Attorney General, Columbus, Ohio, for Appellee. ON BRIEF:Joseph E. Wilhelm, Federal Public Defender's Office, Cleveland, Ohio, Henry F. DeBaggis, Assistant United States Attorney, Cleveland, Ohio, for Appellant. Charles L. Wille, Office of the Ohio Attorney General, Columbus, Ohio, for Appellee.