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October 6, 2004

State of state Blakely appeals

A very knowledgeable reader reports that the interesting Van Buren decision from Washington state (discussed here) "is likely to have a very short shelf life" because the Washington Supreme Court has "recently granted review in no fewer than 6 Blakely cases — each with a different issue of retroactivity, the extent of the prior conviction exception, the scope of Blakely facts, etc." According to this report, "oral arguments will be held on November 9 and 10."

In addition to providing an interesting example of a state supreme court's proactive approach to settling a host of unsettled Blakely issues, this report leads me to wonder (1) how many state supreme court decisions addressing Blakely we may see before the end of the year, and (2) whether and when the US Supreme Court will get involved if state supreme courts reach different conclusions about fundamental Blakely issues such as the decision's retroactivity, the extent of the prior conviction exception, the scope of Blakely facts, the application of Blakely to judicial fact-finding to support imposition of consecutive sentences, etc.

October 6, 2004 at 09:00 PM | Permalink

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