COMMONWEALTH V. KELLY, BRATLIE & SHDEED (MASSACHUSETTS SUPREME JUDICIAL COURT, 2014)

This case challenges a judge's jury instructions pursuant to a prosecution under the Massachusetts Hate Crimes Penalties Act, where the judge instructed the jury to determine if the defendants acted intentionally and deliberately in assaulting the victim because of his race but didn't instruct that the defendants' bias motive also be a "predominant" or "substantial" reason for the assault. ADL's brief urges the Court to uphold the judge's jury instructions and not insert a "predominant" or "substantial" factor test which would weaken protections for hate crimes victims and communities across the Commonwealth.