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August 29, 2014

New Hampshire Supreme Court rules Miller is substantive and retroactive to prior JLWOP cases

Today the New Hampshire Supreme Court in In re Petition of State of New Hampshire, No. 2013-0566 (N.H. Aug. 29, 2014) (available here), declared that the Supreme Court's Eighth Amendment ruling in Miller v. Alabama should be applied retroactively. Here is how the court's ruling begins and ends:

In this Rule 11 petition, see Sup. Ct. R. 11, the State appeals the determination of the Superior Court (Smukler, J.) that the rule announced in Miller v. Alabama, 132 S. Ct. 2455 (2012), precluding the imposition of mandatory life-without-the-possibility-of-parole sentences on juvenile offenders under the age of eighteen at the time of their crimes, applies retroactively to the respondents (petitioners in the trial court), Robert Dingman, Eduardo Lopez, Jr., Michael Soto, and Robert Tulloch on collateral review.  We affirm....

We conclude that, pursuant to the Teague framework, the rule announced in Miller constitutes a new substantive rule of law that applies retroactively to cases on collateral review.  Consequently, we find that the respondents are entitled to the retroactive benefit of the Miller rule in post-conviction proceedings.  In light of our decision, we decline to address the respondents’ argument that we should “apply a broader retroactivity doctrine than the federal courts apply.”

August 29, 2014 at 01:16 PM | Permalink


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Thank you for your time. I was sentenced to two years suspension of my driving privledge along with $900.00 fine and school on Oct.8th 2012.Now I go to get my license and they tell me the mandatory sentence is now 3 years. My Lawyer said call him next year and hung up. Can they apply this sentence retroactively and where and how could I document the answer, I need a little more than whats written above. Like who is the respondent the State or the other guys. his is great help and the only blog I have found that approaches the subject. Thank you so much for this information and your time.

Posted by: John Mather | Oct 28, 2014 4:59:52 PM

Please note comment above. Can a dui sentence which has been changed and enhanced following my sentencing to 3 years from 2years. My Lawyer said call him in a year. Your Blog is great and has given me a good start. Is the State the Petitioner? Thank you and would greatly appreciate any guidance or direction Best regards John Mather

Posted by: John Mather | Oct 28, 2014 5:10:45 PM

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