Skip navigation

Articles by Douglas Ankney

Louisiana Supreme Court: Statute Compelling Registered Sex Offenders to Carry ID Emblazoned with ‘SEX OFFENDER’ Unconstitutional

The State charged Tazin Ardell Hill with altering an official identification card to conceal his designation as a ...

Fifth Circuit: Special Conditions of Supervised Release That Barred Use of Internet, Computers, and Electronic Devices for 10 Years Not Substantively Reasonable

Illinois Law Firm Offers Web Application to Help Automate Expungement

The Legal Aid Chicago Criminal Records Relief Petitions App (“App”) was built by Chapman’s practice innovations team ...

Sixth Circuit: Probation Officer’s Warrantless Search of Probationer’s Cellphone Violated Fourth Amendment

Jason Fletcher was sentenced to five years’ probation after being convicted of ...

New York Court of Appeals Clarifies When Police May Conduct Traffic Stops

Ninth Circuit: Asking Single Objectionable Question Insufficient to Justify Termination of Defendant’s Right to Pro Se Representation

Todd C. Engel ...

Georgia Supreme Court Affirms Right to Resist Unlawful Arrest and Announces Right Includes Use of Proportionate Force Against Government Property

Christopher ...

Mother Calls 911 for Assistance With 13-Year-Old Autistic Son; Police Arrive and Shoot Him

Barton told KUTV that she informed police that Cameron has Asperger’s syndrome and was experiencing ...

North Carolina Supreme Court Announces Harbison Applies When Defense Counsel Implies Defendant’s Guilt Without Prior Consent


by Douglas Ankney

The Supreme Court of North Carolina extended State v. Harbison, 337 S.E.2d 504 (N.C. 1985) (holding per se violation of defendant’s constitutional right to effective counsel when counsel concedes guilt to jury without defendant’s prior consent), to include cases where defense counsel impliedly – rather than expressly – admits the defendant is guilty of a charged offense.

Anton Thurman McAllister repeatedly slapped his live-in girlfriend, Stephanie Leonard, outside a gas station. McAllister then forced Leonard back to their apartment. An attendant at the gas station reported the altercation.

Once inside the apartment, McAllister continued to hit Leonard and twice attempted to suffocate her. McAllister then forced Leonard into the bathtub where he washed the blood from Leonard’s body. Afterward, they went to bed and had sexual intercourse.

The following evening, officers located McAllister. He agreed to accompany the officers to the police station for a non-custodial interview. The interview was videotaped, during which McAllister stated he: (1) pushed Leonard to the ground outside the gas station, (2) backhanded her in the face, (3) smacked her in the lip, (4) grabbed her in the mouth, (5) bit her hand, and (6) “smacked [her] ass ...

First Circuit Announces Residual Clause of U.S.S.G. § 4B1.2(a)(2) When Applied Pre-Booker Is Unconstitutional Under Johnson

by Douglas Ankney

Bucking the trend among the majority of federal circuits, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit announced that the residual clause of U.S. Sentencing Guidelines (“U.S.S.G.” or “Guidelines”) § 4B1.2(a)(2) – when applied prior to United States v. Booker, 543 U.S. 220 (2005) – is unconstitutionally vague pursuant to Johnson v. United States, 576 U.S. 591 (2015), and a challenge to a sentence imposed under the residual clause may be collaterally raised via 28 U.S.C. § 2255(f)(3). 

In 1997, Anthony M. Shea was convicted in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Hampshire, inter alia, of armed attempted bank robbery under 18 U.S.C. § 2113(a) and (d) (“Count 1”) and of using a firearm during a crime of violence [the armed attempted bank robbery] under 18 U.S.C. § 924(c) (“Count 2”). But the district court also classified Shea as a “Career Offender” under U.S.S.G. § 4B1.2(a)(2)’s residual clause based on Shea’s prior violent felony convictions for federal armed bank robbery and assault and battery on a police officer in Massachusetts. 

Both U.S.S.G. § 4B1.2(a)(2) and the Armed Career Criminal Act, 18 U.S.C. 924(e)(2)(B) (“ACCA”), defined “violent felony” as ...



The Habeas Citebook: Prosecutorial Misconduct Side
Stop Prison Profiteering Campaign Ad 2