Skip to content
Name: King v. Schriro
Case #: 06-99006
Court: US Court of Appeals
District 9 Cir
Opinion Date: 08/11/2008

Prosecutorial misconduct occurs when the prosecutor’s remarks place the prestige of the government behind a witness’s testimony or suggests that information not presented to the jury supported the testimony. In his opening statement at this murder trial, the prosecutor stated that he could not guarantee what witness one would say, but that if he testified truthfully, he would implicate appellant in the murder. As to the second witness, the prosecutor advised the jury that the witness was scared to death to testify. The state court found no error as to the statement regarding witness one as the prosecutor was not vouching for the testimony, but was preparing the jury for the possibility that the witness might testify differently from his interview with the investigating officer. As to witness two, there was no error as the witness’s demeanor on the stand evidenced her fear and her unwillingness to testify went to her credibility. The federal court upheld the state court ruling, finding that the state court did not misapply U.S. Supreme Court holdings.