The Law: Standard for States

Trial by jury. The very phrase is so much a part of the American pattern that it hardly seems open to question. Indeed, the Sixth Amendment guarantees that right to an accused in federal court. Yet in a dozen states the defendant is left to the mercy of a judge in cases where there would be no question of his right to a federal jury. Last week the Supreme Court brought those states into line.

The court's decision involved a Negro named Gary Duncan, a small ferryboat captain in New Orleans who was charged with...

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