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Kansas v. Marsh

United States Supreme Court
548 U.S. 163 (2006)


Michael Lee Marsh II (defendant) broke into the home of Marry Ane Pusch and waited for her to return. When Pusch returned home with her 19-month-old daughter Marsh repeatedly shot Marry Ane, stabbed her, and slashed her throat. Marsh then set the house on fire with the toddler inside, killing her. The jury convicted Marsh of capital murder of the toddler and first-degree premeditated murder or Marry Ane, aggravated arson, and aggravated burglary. The jury found, beyond a reasonable doubt, the existence of three aggravating circumstances, but those circumstances were not outweighed by any mitigating circumstances. Marsh was sentenced to death for the murder of the toddler, sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of Marry Ane and additional imprisonment for the arson and burglary offenses. Marsh appealed and the Kansas Supreme Court reversed only the capital murder and aggravated arson convictions. The U.S. Supreme Court then granted certiorari to review.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Thomas, J.)

Concurrence (Scalia, J.)

Dissent (Souter, J.)

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