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June 24, 2004

Blakely..... WOW!!

The Supreme Court handed down Blakely v. Washington this morning, and the only word that summarizes the ruling is WOW. Here is a link to all the opinions in Blakely, which essentially holds that any and every fact which increases the legally available sentence must be found by a jury or admitted by the defendant. In other words, it will no longer be constitutional for guideline sentencing systems to allow judges to find facts which increase applicable sentencing ranges. Of course, this is how nearly every sentencing guideline system works, and thus the ramifications of this decision for modern sentencing reforms cannot be overstated.

Each of the four opinions --- Scalia for the majority, O'Connor, Kennedy and Breyer all dissenting --- is rich with intrigiung ideas, compelling arguments and rhetorical flourishes. Sentencing scholars and also constitutional scholars are likely to be talking about this opinion for a long time. And, of course, Blakely will not be the last word on these subjects. There will be lots and lots more litigation (some of which will surely make its way again to the Supreme Court) about what this rule now means for the operation of structured sentencing systems. Stay tuned.

June 24, 2004 at 01:20 PM | Permalink

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I posted recently about the new sentencing cases. I should also note that there is more discussion of these cases going on at other law blogs. In particular, Crim Law Blog, Sentencing Law and Policy Blog have very interesting commentary.... [Read More]

Tracked on Jun 25, 2004 8:12:34 PM

Comments

TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN. WHAT CAN YOU TELL ME ABOUT BEING SENTENCED UNDER THE NEW BLAKELY LAW. MY SITUATION IS THIS. I AM ABOUT TO BE SENTENCED UNDER THE NEW BLAKELY LAW, BUT MY PLEA WAS SIGNED BY THE FEDERAL GUIDELINES

Posted by: A.STEWART | Mar 20, 2005 8:54:49 PM

My husband has already been sentenced
before the Blakely Law went into
affect he is filing for an appeal.
What chances does he have now???

Posted by: H. Bradley | Apr 9, 2005 12:14:45 PM

my husband is sentenced already waiting on appeal can the blakely law still help him?

Posted by: mary guardiola | Jun 23, 2005 7:10:07 PM

Hello I have a question regarding the Blakely law. I have a friend that took a pleaa in a felony case. He was a first time offender and the judge gave him a sentence much longer thatn the minimum sentence. Does the Blakely law apply to all first time offenders?

Posted by: Denise Hurley | Mar 9, 2006 2:15:17 PM

My son has a stated prison sentence of 5
years for drug trafficing with a two
year mandatory, with the new Blakely law
does he have any chance at having his
sentence reduced? He has filed an appeal
the appeals court has reversed the trail court decision so now he is waiting now for a resentencing hearing.

The problem is the judges in my
area are since Blakely STILL resentecing
a person back to their same sentence,
how can this be allowed?

Posted by: Barb | Jul 27, 2006 1:23:56 AM

My sister in law is in prison on a 22 yr sentence She has 8 yrs left Nop chance for parole. She took a plea DOes the Blakely law have a chance at helpin her. SHe is in the Arizona Prison system

Posted by: Rick | Apr 7, 2008 3:27:21 PM

I am a brother in law of a woman in prison in the Arizona prison system She received 44 years running concurrent She has about 8 years left, I am wondering if the BLAKELY LAW might have a positive affect and a chance for her to be pardoned. I am a concerned family menmber trying to help her

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Posted by: קבוצות רכישה | Jan 6, 2011 6:44:12 AM

Is there a law that protects you from enhancement on he say she say?

Posted by: Danita Womack | Jan 10, 2011 2:59:17 PM

Sentencing scholars and also constitutional scholars are
likely to be talking about this opinion for a long time.

Posted by: Medic Blog | Mar 14, 2011 10:05:30 AM

I am wondering if the BLAKELY LAW might have a positive affect and a chance for her to be pardoned.

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