State
v.
Pruett

Supreme Court of OhioOct 20, 1971
28 Ohio St. 2d 29 (Ohio 1971)
28 Ohio St. 2d 29274 N.E.2d 755

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No. 41163

Decided October 20, 1971.

Criminal procedure — Selection of jurors — Remand from United States Supreme Court — Death sentence vacated — Life sentence imposed.

APPEAL from the Court of Appeals for Ashtabula County.

ON REMAND from the United States Supreme Court.

This cause, which was reported in 18 Ohio St.2d 167, has been remanded to our court by the United States Supreme Court for further proceedings. That court ordered and adjudged that the judgment of the Supreme Court of Ohio, insofar as it imposes the death sentence in this cause, be reversed, in the light of Witherspoon v. Illinois (1968), 391 U.S. 510; Boulden v. Holman (1969), 394 U.S. 478; and Maxwell v. Bishop (1970), 398 U.S. 262.

Mr. Robert D. Webb, prosecuting attorney, and Mr. Walter E. Thayer, for appellee.

Messrs. Nazor Nazor and Mr. Gordon L. Nazor, for appellant.


Under the view taken by the United States Supreme Court of the jury voir dire, as reflected in the three cases cited, supra, which we are obliged to follow, one or more of the members of the veniremen discharged in the instant case did not unambiguously state that he would automatically vote against the imposition of the death penalty in a proper case, or in other words, no matter what the trial might reveal.

Accordingly, the judgment of the Court of Appeals affirming the sentence of death is reversed and the judgment of the Court of Appeals affirming the conviction of defendant on the charge of murder in the first degree is affirmed. The cause is remanded to the Court of Common Pleas, with instructions to vacate the journal entry sentencing this defendant to death, and then to sentence defendant to imprisonment in the Ohio State Penitentiary for life as provided for in R.C. 2901.01.

Judgment accordingly.

O'NEILL, C.J., SCHNEIDER, HERBERT, DUNCAN, CORRIGAN, STERN and LEACH, JJ., concur.