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January 6, 2006

Oklahoma court develops Atkins procedures

As detailed in this article, the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals (the highest state court with appellate jurisdiction in criminal cases) on Thursday issued a ruling in Blonner v. State, No. 2006 OK CR 1 (Okla. Ct. Crim. App. Jan. 5, 2006) (available here), in which the court establishes a detailed procedure for the resolution of mental retardation claims in capital cases.

Among the interesting aspects of Blonner is that court's opinion represents a partial reversal of course on these issues, and the opinion includes detailed jury instructions and a jury form that makes it read more like the work of a rules committee than the work of an appellate court.  And, for this reason, Justice Lumpkin issues a stinging partial dissent complaining about a decision he believes "is best regarded as an example of judicial activism and legislation spinning out of control:"

The Court's inability to adopt a procedure and exercise the self-discipline to stick with it disregards the Rule of Law and demonstrates why there is such an aversion to legislating from the bench.  For when Courts begin crafting the law rather than interpreting it, we create chaos and skewed doctrines that are not in touch with the will of the people.  Even worse, we fail to follow the Rule of Law and introduce politics where it does not belong.

This is where we find ourselves today. The Court keeps "changing the rules," adding more procedures and loopholes that surely wreak havoc in pending trials.  Indeed, the latest proposal requires a separate trial, jury, and appeal.  The process is so micromanaged it literally makes one's head spin.  In fact, it is difficult to find your way through today’s opinion without getting a headache....

January 6, 2006 at 10:06 PM | Permalink


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I believe truely not all persons/people convicted as a sex offender are truely a sex offender . Don't get me wrong I believe there is wierd / demented males/females that get a kick out of it (which is very sick and gods punishment will prevail over those individuals) ... I know a person that was wrongfully convicted , due to someone knowing the D.A. and things being twisted , etc .

Posted by: Anonymous (not registered) on October 25, 2006 at 02:40 am
That person now lives , wondering "Why me?" , " Secluding themselves , thinking someone else could lie on them , could make up anything , could heartlessly ruin the rest of there life. That person has paid out so much in court costs , laywer fees , and now on top of everything , can never , ever , have any kids or wife/ husband of their own ... And if they did they couldnt live in the same house . They couldn't watch their kid/kids go from bottles and diapers to saying their first word, to learning to ride their bike without training wheels, they couldnt be involved with their child/children to watch them grow-up , they couldn't be their for their wife ... How is that normal ?

Posted by: Anonymous (not registered) on October 25, 2006 at 02:41 am
I guess we all can look at the situation in many different ways , but I feel there should be some loop-holes / ammendments to the laws , if somone (he or she) , by the other party having a choice ( someone that knows the person and knows they would do nothing) Where are our rights? , the state gets to choose ? Why not us the people or person who truely knows the individual , why couldnt they make a request , saying " Yes I know his/her history , I'm taking this chance " If someting was to happen then , it is that own persons fault ..

Posted by: Anonymous (not registered) on October 25, 2006 at 02:41 am
But if making the right choice , the two could have somewhat a normal life and the children could have both parties there , to help raise , comfort and protect them , I don't even think they thought of the children of someone convicted of a sex crime ... How damaging not only to the parents but to the child that , has no idea why they can't see daddy or mommy and "Why , don't you two live together ?" I am sorry others may disagree with me , but I find it horrible ... I think there should be some ammendments . Also say the offender has a younger minor sibling , they can never see there sister or brother again ...? Wait a minute , thats there own blood!

Posted by: Anonymous (not registered) on October 25, 2006 at 02:41 am
They can't live near a school ? Within 2000 feet , you know how many schools are everywhere , what we have to run them all to the woods , WHAT THEY NEED TO LIVE IN A TENT somewhere ? I checked , in most cities there is a school practically in every neighborhood ... how the hell , are they suppose to find anywhere in town to live , not to mention daycares? The law is very strange , they can't live near a school , but if the want to further their eduication they can go to one ? HMM, has me stumped .... I dont believe everything I hear , I dont believe everything I see , and defintly don't believe in ruining a persons life for the rest of their life , because some girl or guy said " OH, mommy he /she touched me !" WHEN THAT SOMEONE SHOULD BE PUT ON A LIE DETECTOR TEST AND MADE SURE THEY AREN'T LYING , because if they aren't , YAH punish the criminal , but if they are punish the one who was about to take away , A GOOD PERSONS LIFE , just because the were trying to get even , or play a cruel joke, or jealous , etc... Ok I'm done :-) thanks and just my opinion !

Posted by: Anonymous (not registered) on October 25, 2006 at 02:50 am

Posted by: A Hurt Friend | Nov 28, 2006 11:53:44 AM

I have a friend who has recently been locked up . I can't seem to find anyone , anywhere that believes there is something we can do about his situation , and anyone that is willing to fight for the truth . Let me start from the beginning ...

It was 1994 or 95 , my friend , went to a store, he went there to get something , a girl was standing outside , selling candy for a church function , My friend was barely 21 at the time , the girl appeared to be 18 or 19 by her looks , ( find out later she was 15 ) . He made a comment to her , saying something along the lines of , " Don't you think that skirts to short " Well , as he walked away from her and continued to wait on his ride out front . The Manager came out and asked him to leave and not come back . He was stumped but walked of the property and proceeded home . Two weeks later roughly , he didn't even really remember The whole manager thing , he walked to the same store to wait for his parents to pick him up (close to his home at the time). Well , a lady that was standing outside smoking (she worked at the hair salon inside) , My friend walked up to and bummed a cigerette from . She thought he was kind a strange I guess , she went in and mentioned him standing out front , well manager went out and saw my friend , well he called the police , police show up arrest him which was supposedly suppose to be tresspassing , turned into , assault & battery with a dangerous weapon and lewd act / proposal . Matt sitting here like OH MY GOD WHAT??? The manager mention , the salon lady said the girl ran in the store aprox. 2 weeks before screaming about some guy , saying " Wait , here when I get back , I will take you behind store for some foreplay" ,( the girl also claims the guy had a boxknife and held it to her side , then later in trial says neck ) Well , they put my friend as being there 2 weeks prior talking to the girl ... Well he had made a comment to the girl , but definitly not that ... and they never found a weapon , and the store claims they didnt have cameras . My friend was arrested , locked up and set for trial ... The trial begins , He had a car wreck not too long before this situation occured , which causes matt to stutter if under pressure , he's a little slower than the normal male at age 21 , prob on about a 17 to 18 year old level at the time , ( matts now 30 , and still has issues with this but not as bad) he also under pressure then tended to loose train of thought , and maybe answer in correctly to a question or something asked because so many thoughts to thumb thru , and slower at doing so ...I dunno quite how to explain but thats the best I can ...So the attorney at the time thought it would be best , cause the d.a. and jury had a mind set of guilty before matt even would of got on the stand . That matt plea guilty , which is not right , but anyways , they did , he did , and now has to register as a sex offender , and was sentenced to 4 months time and then 10 years probation , DOC , well , it has been hard for my friend to get a job , to live anywhere , due to schools , or being able to pay for it , etc . and he didnt quite understand all of it to a "t" . It's almost impossible for the guy to have a life . He is labeled always . They recently got him on a failure to register and a failure to appear . The failure to appear was an honest mistake , he has so many court dates and so many appointments , and is also slower mind wise , so it is harder for him to keep things straight , he honestly forgot , and thought the date was 2 days later than it really was . The failuer to register part , he called his probation officer for almost a month to schedule and app. and she never called back , then went to see her the next month , then tried reaching her again , and could not , until 2 weeks prior to court date . She appears at court date NOVEMBER 13th , 06 beside d.a. and claims my friend doesnt contact her and if he does it is like after he moves , which it may of been 2 to 3 days after he moved but never any longer than that , but he does contact her , he wasn't registered , because he had no address , he was homeless , stayed with me some , and maybe a friends house one night , and thought about under a bridge a time or two . How can he register every day , and how can he when there is no address to give ? He got registered 2 days after a warrant we didnt know about had already been issued for a failure to do so ... We found out about this charge at court on the 13th , but he was registered in del city . Anyways , the sentenced him to 4 yrs and 8 mths , revoked his bond , I dont in anyway feel this is right , My friend was doing the best he could to his knowledge , an attorney has an appeal supposedly started . I am curious though , if we can appeal the whole entire thing , get it off his record , something , This guy is not who the deamed him guilty to be . I have known My best friend for seven years , I have 3 children , I have character statements , etc ... IT"S KILLING HIM , HE IS MY BEST FRIEND , and I dont want to see this like this . God knows , I know , other people know , HE is innocent !

thanks for your time

Posted by: A Hurt Friend | Nov 28, 2006 12:00:49 PM

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