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December 19, 2004

State courts gone Blakely wild

The important Blakely rulings this week from the Minnesota Supreme Court in Shattuck (details here) and from the Oregon Supreme Court in Dilts (details here) are just one reflection of all the recent state Blakely activity.  To twist my favorite lines from the all-time great movie Airplane!, "Looks like I picked the right weeks to stop tracking state Blakely cases." (Background here and here.)

In the first two weeks of December, there were over 100 state intermediate appellate Blakely decisions appearing on-line.  And on December 16 alone there were major Blakely rulings in no less than seven states: in addition to Shattuck from Minnesota and Dilts in Oregon, Arizona had State v. Gatliff, 2004 WL 2902551 (Ariz. App. Div. 1 Dec. 16, 2004), Colorado had People v. Barton, 2004 WL 2903510 (Colo. App. Dec. 16, 2004) (previously discussed here), Indiana had Berry v. State, 2004 WL 2903687 (Ind. App. Dec. 16, 2004), Washington had State v. Mabry, 2004 WL 2905239 (Wash. App. Div. 3 Dec. 16, 2004), and California had its standard daily complement of more than a half-dozen published and unpublished Blakely rulings.

I think all the recent state Blakely activity, especially late last week, likely is partially a result of the non-arrival of Booker and Fanfan.  The state courts now know they are going to have to wait at least another month before getting additional Blakely guidance from the US Supreme Court.  Thus, even though they realize that, in the words of the Oregon Supreme Court, they "may be shooting at a moving target," these courts perhaps now feel compelled to render decisions in major Blakely cases rather than continue to wait and hope for the US Supreme Court to soon clear up some of the Blakely confusion.

December 19, 2004 at 04:57 PM | Permalink


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