Often, facts are included in essay questions which are irrelevant but are a trap for the unwary. Basically, you are "issuing a legal opinion. It should start with the taxonomy of the course subject and then drill down to the issue addressed in the paper.
Here's an example of an argument: "While the defendant was not given a Miranda warning by police, his record of prior arrests and convictions where he was given the Miranda warning put the defendant on notice of his right against self-incrimination.
Another common misstep is to choose a paper topic that does not allow you to demonstrate course knowledge.
Summarizing the views of others in your own work is the best way to understand the contours and cracks of their arguments. How long should the paper be? Shephard's is a book which contains a history of all appellate cases decided after the opinion you are citing.
RULE The rule in a case is the law or laws which govern the outcome of a case. Does your professor have any pet peeves or strong preferences regarding what should be in your paper? If footnotes count in the page limit, this is a real consideration—make sure you know the answer. Conduct Rigorous Research Once you identify the issue that you want to address in your paper, create a research plan.