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Name: U.S. v. Collins
Case #: 06-50339
Court: US Court of Appeals
District 9 Cir
Opinion Date: 01/07/2009
Summary

A pattern of strikes is not necessary to establish a prima facie case of discrimination for Batson purposes. When the prosecutor struck the only remaining Black juror on the panel, defense counsel made a Batson motion. The court found a prima facie case had not been made because a pattern of strikes was not shown since this was the first time the prosecutor excused an African American and the other African American had been stricken by the defense. The appellate court found the trial court applied the wrong standard by requiring a pattern of strikes. A single inference of discrimination is enough to move a Batson inquiry to the second stage. Plus, whereas here, there is only one member of a cognizable group subject to a strike by the prosecution, the lack of others of that group in the jury pool make patterns meaningless. Considering other jurors similarly situated, and the totality of circumstances, the defense had met its burden. So the case was remanded for the prosecutor to set forth his reasons for striking the juror at a hearing.