Sampson v. United States, No. 16-1727 (1st Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
Petitioner pleaded guilty to two counts of carjacking resulting in death. The jury sentenced Petitioner to death under the Federal Death Penalty Act (FDPA). Due to jury taint, Petitioner’s sentence was vacated and his case remanded for further proceedings. The government subsequently filed an amended notice of intent to seek the death penalty, as required by the FDPA. The amended notice listed the factors that the government believed justified the death penalty, largely tracking the original notice. Petitioner filed a motion in limine to dismiss or strike two non-statutory aggravating factors the prosecutor intended to present in a second penalty-phase proceeding under the FDPA. The district court denied the motion. Petitioner appealed, arguing that because the jury in his first penalty-phase proceeding did not find unanimously that the government proved these two aggravating factors beyond a reasonable doubt, their introduction at the new penalty-phase proceeding was barred by double jeopardy principles. The First Circuit affirmed, holding that the Double Jeopardy Clause did not bar the government from alleging those non-statutory aggravating factors again at Petitioner’s new penalty-phase proceeding.