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December 20, 2004

Predicting the Supreme Court's coming sentencing docket

It is, of course, premature to speculate about the Supreme Court's next Blakely case before it decides Booker and Fanfan.  But interesting posts here and here by Tom Goldstein over at the SCOTUSblog about the Supreme Court's docket has me wondering whether cert. petitions are being filed by federal defendants like Levy (background here) or state defendants like Lucien (background here) to make it possible the Court could speak directly to Apprendi/Blakely retroactivity issues this term.  (Of course, it is possible, though I think unlikely, that the High Court will speak directly to retroactivity issues in Booker and Fanfan.)

Meanwhile, as this AP story details, Kansas prosecutors are hoping that the Supreme Court might take up one more death penalty case this term.  As the article details, the Kansas Supreme Court agreed to stay its Marsh ruling last week (details here) declaring Kansas's death penalty law unconstitutional while Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline pursues an appeal to the Supreme Court.  (However, since only six defendants' fates depend on the Marsh ruling, while the fates of hundreds of thousands of defendants might depend on Blakely's retroactivity, I am not sure the Marsh case ought to be a High Court priority.)

December 20, 2004 at 09:49 PM | Permalink


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They need to take that case. I'm tired of paying tax dollars to let these killers and rapists live for years and years.

Posted by: joe | Dec 21, 2004 9:06:20 AM

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