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October 31, 2005

Notable SCOTUS action today

Continuing a manic Monday, the Supreme Court issued a few notable orders and opinion this morning. This post at SCOTUSblog provides the highlights of the action reflected in this order list, and the new opinions already appear here on the Supreme Court's official website. 

The big news from the order list in the criminal justice arena is the Court's decision to take up two cases with follow-up Crawford issues.  For sentencing fans, the order list includes one Booker GVR, as well as a whole bunch of cert. denieds.  Among the cert. denieds, I noticed the Smylie case from Indiana, which raised Blakely's applicability to judicial determinations in support of imposing consecutive sentences. (As detailed in posts here and here, Michael Ausbrook at INCourts has been following the Smylie case closely.)

The two per curiam opinions issued today continue the new Roberts Court's trend of deciding a number of (little?) criminal justice issues through per curiam summary dispositions.  In Kane v. Espitia, No. 04-1538 (S. Ct. Oct. 31, 2005) (available here), the Court overtuerned Ninth Circuit's grant of habeas on AEDPA grounds by saying that the Supreme Court's own precedent did not "clearly establish" a prisoner's constitutional right of access to a law library.

In Eberhart v. US, No. 04-1538 (S. Ct. Oct. 31, 2005) (available here), will excite only proceduralist through it ultimately results in a loss for federal prosecutors.  The most interesting facet of the case, in my view, are comments in the penultimate paragraph, which I will discuss in a separate post.

October 31, 2005 at 11:30 AM | Permalink

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