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Robinson v. California

Decision, Significance, Cruel And Unusual Punishment, The Consequences, The Anti-drug Abuse Act Of 1986


Lawrence Robinson


State of California

Petitioner's Claim

That the state violated his Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment rights, which protect him from cruel and unusual punishment, because the state of California sentenced him to 90 days in jail for having a drug addiction.

Chief Lawyer for Petitioner

S. Carter McMorris

Chief Lawyer for Respondent

William E. Doran

Justices for the Court

Hugo Lafayette Black, William J. Brennan, Jr., William O. Douglas, John Marshall Harlan II, Potter Stewart (writing for the Court), Earl Warren

Justices Dissenting

Tom C. Clark, Byron R. White (Felix Frankfurter did not participate)


Washington, D.C.

Date of Decision

25 June 1962

Related Cases

  • Jacobson v. Massachusetts, 197 U.S. 11 (1905).
  • Whipple v. Martinson, 256 U.S. 41 (1921).
  • Powell v. Texas, 392 U.S. 514 (1968).


"Report on Cocaine and Federal Sentencing Policy." United States Sentencing Commission, http://www.ussc.gov.

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1954 to 1962