This works discusses the Scott Peterson case, which took place from 2002-2004. Scott Peterson was convicted of murdering his wife Laci and unborn son Conner in 2004, and was given the death penalty. Peterson has filed automatic appeals and habeas corpus appeals since his trial, which have made their way through the California court system. Peterson’s death sentence was overturned by the California Supreme Court in 2020, and the California Supreme Court ordered the San Mateo trial court to look into overturning Peterson’s conviction. This work not only discusses the Peterson case at great length, it also serves to examine and evaluate claims made in both of Scott Peterson’s Appeals. This work also analyzes claims made by Janey Peterson, Peterson’s sister-in-law, and other advocates of Peterson’s innocence. This work mainly uses information from the documentary series The Murder of Laci Peterson, Peterson’s appellant briefs, the State of California’s response briefs, and the Scott Peterson Appeal website to support and refute these claims. By examining these claims, this work seeks to evaluate the legitimacy of claims that Scott Peterson was not given a fair trial, and/or is innocent.


Scott Peterson, Lacy Peterson, Scott Peterson's Appeals, Scott Peterson's case, Scott Peterson innocent

Document Type


Year of Completion



Master of Science in Criminal Justice


Harvey Kushner

Academic Department

Department of Criminal Justice