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February 7, 2008

Hawaii still dealing with Apprendi fix and fall-out

This local article reveals how long it can take for certain matters to make their way from the Supreme Court in DC all the way out to Hawaii:

State courts can resentence convicted felons to extended prison terms under a new law enacted just last year for cases dating to the year 2000, according to a state appeals court ruling issued last week.  The ruling by the state Intermediate Court of Appeals upholds the constitutionality of Act 1, which brings Hawaii sentencing statutes in line with recent U.S. Supreme Court orders and rulings.  The effective date of the law is retroactive to 2000, when the high court issued a ruling in a New Jersey case.

The new law requires juries to determine whether a convicted felon is eligible for a prison term longer than what is normally allowed, based on the danger he poses to the public.  Previously, judges made that determination....

"We're happy with the ICA ruling, and it is our hope that the Supreme Court will see the issue similarly," said state Attorney General Mark Bennett. Oral arguments are scheduled for today. Public Defender Jack Tonaki said there already is a case that raises the same or similar issues pending before the Hawaii Supreme Court.

February 7, 2008 at 07:22 AM | Permalink


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