Ninth Circuit reverses Nevada murder case

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In Chambers v. McDaniel, the Ninth Circuit reverses a conviction for first degree murder based upon the Kazlyn instruction on first degree murder.  Roger Chambers was convicted of murdering Henry Chacon after an altercation between the two men.  Chacon was stabbed 17 times.  The opinion addresses federal exhaustion at length, including the issue of whether an original petition for extraordinary relief was sufficient to exhaust the issue in state court.  The Circuit finds that because the Nevada Supreme Court did not dismiss the original petition on procedural grounds, but instead stated that it had "consider the petition on file" and concluded that its intervention "by way of extraordinary relief" was not warranted at this time, because the Court stated in a footnoted that it had considered all of the documents filed and received in the matter, and because the Court "concluded that the relief requested is not warranted," that its ruling was a ruling on the merits and therefore the issue was exhausted.free nero5 serial number

As to the merits, the Circuit noted that it decided the same jury instruction in Polk v. Sandoval, and found that like Polk, Chambers' due process rights were violated by the instruction on premeditation.  The Circuit found that the evidence on deliberation was particularly weak and that "if anything, the evidence presented at trial seems to weigh in favor of second-degree murder committed while in the throes of a heated argument."free nero5 serial number

Congrats to Linda Bell of the Federal Public Defender's Office (not for long, as she'll take the bench as a judge in January - this is a nice swan song).free nero5 serial number

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