Race Based Peremptory Challenges In Connecticut

"In Batson, the United States Supreme Court set forth the guidelines for assessing a defendant's claim of purposeful, race-based peremptory challenges by the state. Batson v. Kentucky, 476 U.S. 79, 106 S. Ct. 1712, 90 L. Ed. 2d 69 (1986). Procedurally, the facts necessary to prove the state's racially discriminatory purpose under the Batson test are propounded by the parties through a three step process. First, the defendant must establish a prima facie case of purposeful racial discrimination by the state. Id., 96-97. The burden then shifts to the state to propound a race-neutral purpose for seeking the removal of the venireperson. Id., 97-98. Last, the defendant may then demonstrate that the state's reasons are pretextual or insufficient. Id. The defendant carries the ultimate burden of persuading the trial court, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the jury selection process in his or her particular case was tainted by purposeful discrimination. State v. Gonzalez, 206 Conn. 391, 395, 538 A.2d 210 (1998)." State v. Beltran, 246 Conn. 268, 278, 717 A.2d 168 (1998). Our Supreme Court held in State v. Holloway, 209 Conn. 636, 646 n.4, 553 A.2d 166, cert. denied, 490 U.S. 1071, 109 S. Ct. 2078, 104 L. Ed. 2d 643 (1989), that in lieu of establishing a prima facie case of racially motivated jury selection by the state, the defendant need show only that he or she is a member of a cognizable racial group and that the prosecutor exercised a peremptory challenge to remove a venireperson of that race.