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November 16, 2009

SCOTUS adds a habeas case (with a sentencing spin) to its docket

As detailed in this new SCOTUSblog post, the Supreme Court has added yet another case to its docket that should interest sentencing fans.  The case is Magwood v. Culliver, and here is the question that the Court has taken up:

When a person is resentenced after having obtained federal habeas relief from an earlier sentence, is a claim in a federal habeas petition challenging that new sentencing judgment a “second or successive” claim under 28 U.S.C. § 2244(b) if the petitioner could have challenged his previous sentence on the same constitutional grounds?

Though a habeas case arising in a death penalty context, it seems quite possible that Magwood (which is has sentencing's old friend Jeff Fisher as counsel of record) could address some legal issues that could impact lots of other types of cases in lots of types of sentencing settings.

Reflecting a bit more broadly on this newest cert grant, it is becoming easier and easier to conclude that the addition of Justice Sotomayor to the Court has continued the trend of the early Roberts Court to take up many criminal justice cases and issues with important day-to-day implications for many criminal practitioners. 

Some related old and new posts on SCOTUS docket issues:

November 16, 2009 at 10:21 AM | Permalink


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Doug, maybe I missed something, but I didn't see a ton of general applicability in the 11th Circuit opinion. Seems more of intellectual interest than anything else.

Posted by: federalist | Nov 16, 2009 12:57:52 PM

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