US Supreme Court issues opinions in 2 criminal cases

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This morning the United States Supreme Court issued opinions in Chambers v. United States and Jimenez v. Quarterman. 

In Chambers, the Court concludes that a state court offense of failure to report for penal confinement was not a "violent felony" under the Armed Career Criminal Act.  The federal statute defines "violent felony" in part as a crime that "involves conduct that presents a serious potential risk of physical injury to another."  The Court holds that it is the generic crime that counts, not how the crime was committed on a particular occasion.  Under this categorical approach, failure to report for prison is not a violent felony.  The opinion is authored by Justice Breyer.  Justice Alito filed an opinion concurring in the judgment which was joined by Justice Thomas.

In Jimenez, the Court addresses AEDPA's 1 year limitation under 28 USC 2244(d) in a case where a defendant is granted an out-of-time appeal by a state court.  The Court holds that where a state court grants a criminal defendant the right to file an out-of-time direct appeal during state habeas proceedings, but before the defendant has first sought federal habeas review, his judgment is not "final" for purposes of 28 USC 2244(d)(1)(A) until the conclusion of the out-of-time direct appeal or the expiration of the time for seeking certiorari review of that appeal.  Once a state court reopens direct review of a conviction, the conviction is no longer final for 2244(d)(1)(A) purposes.  Justice Thomas authored the unanimous opinion.

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This page contains a single entry by JoNell published on January 13, 2009 8:03 AM.

2008 Nevada Supreme Court Statistics was the previous entry in this blog.

Nevada Supreme Court grants new penalty hearing in a capital case is the next entry in this blog.

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