Ninth Circuit finds 28 year sentence to be cruel & unusual

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Today the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, in an opinion authored by Justice Bybee, found a sentence of 28 years to life imprisonment, under California's three strikes law, for failure to update an annual sex offender registration to be cruel and unusual punishment under the Eighth Amendment.  The Circuit found that California's registration requirement creates a regulatory offense and the sentence imposed to be grossly disproportionate to the offense.  This is a must read opinion for anyone with a failure to register or failure to change address case in which the State is seeking habitual criminal adjudication.  The opinion is Gonzalez v. Duncan.

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