"U.S. Supreme Court to decide on retrial of Kansas death penalty case," is the Wichita Eagle report by Hurst Laviana.
When the U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Wednesday, it will be considering a Kansas death penalty case that has moved from the Greenwood County Courthouse in Eureka, to the federal courthouse in Wichita, back through Eureka, and then through the Kansas Supreme Court in Topeka.
The U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling, which is expected next spring, likely will determine whether Scott Cheever will be retried for the January 2005 shooting of Greenwood County Sheriff Matt Samuels.
The Kansas Supreme Court ruled in August 2012 that prosecutors violated Cheever’s Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination when they allowed an expert witness to discuss the results of a mental exam that Cheever was required by a federal judge to take.
Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt appealed that state court decision and is scheduled to argue his case before the U.S. Supreme Court. Georgetown University law professor Neal Katyal, a former acting Solicitor General, is representing Cheever in the case at no charge. The court has set aside an hour for arguments.
The ultimate question now before the U.S. Supreme Court deals with whether a criminal defendant waives his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination by asserting a defense that requires a court-ordered mental exam.
"Death penalty case goes to U.S. Supreme Court this week," is AP coverage via the Topeka Capital-Journal.
Scott Cheever has admitted killing Greenwood County Sheriff Matt Samuels in January 2005, but the 32-year-old says heavy meth use made him unable to understand what he was doing.
At Cheever’s trial in 2007, the state called a witness who had given Cheever a mental exam and determined he knew what he was doing when he shot Samuels.
That testimony prompted the state Supreme Court last year to overturn the verdict.