Gray v. State

In Gray v. State, 463 P.2d 897 (Alaska 1970) the Alaska Supreme Court upheld a prosecutor's right to point out that a defendant does not have to present a case until the State has presented its own case, and thus defendants are able to fashion their testimony so as to avoid direct confrontation with the strongest parts of the government's case. In Gray, the court held that the following argument was an "allowable comment on the evidence and the trial tactics of defense counsel": The defendants did not know until the State's case was ended what testimony they would give, what story they would tell, what defense they would present. ... They attempted to controvert every fact until the overwhelming evidence placed them at the scene of the crime and no other alternative was available to them except to testify that they did not shoot with an intent to kill. Id., 463 P.2d at 907.