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Articles by Douglas Ankney

Sixth Circuit: Conspiracy to Commit Hobbs Act Robbery and Attempted Hobbs Act Robbery Are Not Qualifying Predicates to Sustain § 924(j) Conviction

by Douglas Ankney

The U.S. Court of Appeals reversed the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee’s denial of Dominique Cordell Wallace’s 28 U.S.C. § 2255 motion because his convictions for conspiracy to commit Hobbs Act robbery and attempted Hobbs Act robbery are not qualifying predicates after United ...

Third Circuit Announces Conspiracy to Commit ‘Crime of Violence’ Not ‘Crime of Violence’ for Purposes of Sentencing Enhancement Under Guideline § 2K2.1(a)(4)

by Douglas Ankney

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit held that U.S. Sentencing Guidelines (“U.S.S.G.”) § 2K2.1 does not apply to conspiracy to commit a crime of violence.

Junior Abreu pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm as a convicted felon in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1). ...

Eleventh Circuit Reverses Denial of First Step Act Relief Where District Court Construed Letter Asking About Eligibility To Be Motion Requesting Relief

by Douglas Ankney

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit reversed an order of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida that construed a letter from Tydearain Smith asking whether he was eligible for relief under the First Step Act of 2018 (“FSA”) and requesting ...

Fourth Circuit: Convictions Identified in PSR but Not Relied Upon as Predicates for ACCA Enhancement at Sentencing Cannot Be Substituted for Subsequently Disqualified Original Predicate Convictions on Collateral Review

by Douglas Ankney

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit held that an enhanced sentence under the Armed Career Criminal Act, 18 U.S.C. § 924(e)(1) (“ACCA”) cannot be preserved on collateral review by treating as four separate qualifying predicate offenses stemming from a drug arrest that was identified ...

Utah Supreme Court Explains Community Caretaker Exception to Warrant Requirement and Grants Motion to Suppress of Defendant Convicted of DUI Found Sleeping in Parked Car at 24-Hour Restaurant

by Douglas Ankney

The Supreme Court of Utah explained the community caretaking exception to the warrant requirement and reversed the Court of Appeals’ (“COA”) affirmance of a district court’s denial of Brett Smith’s motion to suppress evidence obtained without a warrant or applicable exception to the warrant requirement in violation ...

Fifth Circuit Orders Limited Remand Where District Court’s Denial of First Step Act Relief Unclear

by Douglas Ankney

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ordered a limited remand where the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas denied Gabriel Perez’s petition under § 404 of the First Step Act of 2018 (“FSA”) without adequately explaining its reasons.

Perez was convicted ...

Californians Now Have Say in Whether Their Local Police Force Looks Like a Military Outpost

by Douglas Ankney

With the passage of A.B. 481, Californians have a say as to whether their local police agency looks like a military outpost.

For years, the U.S. military has given local law enforcement agencies weapons of war that are designed to engage foreign adversaries on the battlefield, including ...

California Court of Appeal: Defendant’s ‘Novel Interpretation’ of Pen. Code § 1203.01 Entitles Him to Have Trial Court Consider Motion to Correct Post-Judgment Record 40 Years After Conviction Final

by Douglas Ankney

The Court of Appeal of California, First Appellate District, ruled that Glenn Douglas Crites was entitled to consideration of his motion to have the trial court correct the record transmitted to the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (“DOCR”) under Penal Code § 1203.01(a).

Crites was convicted in ...

New Jersey Supreme Court Orders New Trial Because Detective Failed to Clarify Suspect’s Ambiguous Request for Counsel During Interrogation

by Douglas Ankney

The Supreme Court of New Jersey reversed the convictions of Laura Gonzalez because a detective failed to clarify Gonzalez’s ambiguous request for counsel during her interrogation and because the trial court allowed inadmissible testimony from witnesses.

In 2017, police questioned Gonzales – after providing her with warnings ...

Ohio Supreme Court: Amendment to Statute That Shifts Burden of Proof to State Regarding Self-Defense Applies to All Pending and New Trials After Effective Date, Regardless of When Alleged Crime Occurred

by Douglas Ankney

The Supreme Court of Ohio held that 2018 House Bill 228’s (“H.B. 228”) amendment to R.C. 2901.05 — which shifts the burden of proof on self-defense to the prosecution — apply to all pending and new trials that occur on or after the effective date (March 28, ...



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