Death Penalty: December 2009 Archives

The US Supreme Court has issued two recent per curiam decisions: one today and one last week.

In Michigan v. Fisher, the Court finds that police officers acted reasonably in entering a home without a warrant based upon their belief that there was a need to render emergency assistance.  The failure to call for emergency medical assistance was not determinative because officers needed to assure that the person was not endangering someone else in the house as they had observed violent behavior inside.  Justice Stevens and Sotomayor dissented.

In Porter v. McCollum, the Court finds that trial counsel was ineffective for failing to investigate and present evidence of post-traumatic stress disorder during a capital penalty phase.  In the unanimous pc opinion, the Court noted that "Our Nation has a long tradition of according leniency to veterans in recognition of their service, especially for those who fought on the front lines as Porter did."  This is a must read for those defending capital cases.

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Death Penalty category from December 2009.

Death Penalty: November 2009 is the previous archive.

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