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Articles by Mark Wilson

Fifth Circuit Vacates Sex Offender Supervised Release Conditions

by Mark Wilson

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit vacated several sex offender supervised release conditions, finding that the lower court abused its discretion in imposing the conditions.

In 1998, Chanda Huor, 16, pleaded guilty to raping a four-year-old girl. He was sentenced to several years ...

Eighth Circuit Reverses Convictions Due to Constructive Amendment of Charges

by Mark Wilson

The United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit reversed a man’s convictions for interfering with two forestry workers, ruling that the prosecution and court constructively amended his charges.

Thomas McDill owned property adjacent to the Black Hills National Forest in South Dakota. On May 20, ...

Georgia Hearsay Admissible Under Co-Conspirator Exception

by Mark Wilson

The Georgia Supreme Court held that a criminal defendant was not denied effective assistance of trial counsel when his attorney failed to object to hearsay and a detective’s improper comment on his pre-trial silence. Rather, the hearsay was admissible under a co-conspirator exception to the hearsay rule, ...

Oregon Court Vacates Order Refusing to Seal Arrest Record

by Mark Wilson

Under ORS 137.225(l)(b), “at any time after ... a dismissal of the charges,” an “arrested person may apply” to the trial court “for an order setting aside the record of arrest.” The court is required to seal the records if it finds after a hearing that “the ...

Vermont Guilty Plea Requires Defendant to Personally Acknowledge Factual Basis for Each Element of the Offenses Charged

by Mark Wilson

The Vermont Supreme Court reversed a defendant’s conviction because she never personally admitted to a factual basis for her plea in violation of Vermont Rule of Criminal Procedure 11(f).

In 2013, Alexis Gabree was charged with two counts of grossly negligent operation of a vehicle, death resulting, ...

Eighth Circuit Upholds Warrantless Search of Cellphone Owned by Person on Supervised Release Due to Diminished Expectation of Privacy

by Mark Wilson

The United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit upheld a lower court’s refusal to suppress evidence obtained during a warrantless cellphone search. The Court of Appeals found that an Iowa prisoner did not have an expectation of privacy in his cellphone while serving a supervised ...

Washington Supreme Court Grants Full Evidentiary Hearing for Civilly Committed SVP

by Mark Wilson

The en banc Supreme Court of Washington held that a civilly committed sexually violent predator (“SVP”) was entitled to an evidentiary hearing. The State failed to carry its burden of making a prima facie showing that he continues to meet the SVP definition and that conditional release ...

Oregon Supreme Court Rules Warrantless Entry Into Home in Effort to Obtain Nonconsensual BAC Evidence Not Exigent Circumstance

by Mark Wilson

The Oregon Supreme Court ruled that warrantless entry into a home to obtain nonconsensual blood-alcohol concentration (“BAC”) evidence did not amount to an exigent circumstance that could justify the warrantless home entry.

At 10:15 p.m., on October 11, 2011, police were dispatched to a single-vehicle crash near ...

Ohio Supreme Court Holds Exclusion of Evidence Inappropriate Remedy for Violation of Knock-And-Announce Principle Where Search Warrant Issued

by Mark Wilson

The Ohio Supreme Court held that once a warrant has been issued, the exclusion of evidence is not an appropriate remedy when police violate the knock-and-announce rule.

In October 2012, Boardman Police officers supervised two “controlled buys” by an informant, who purchased heroin from Harsimran Singh. Based ...

Second Circuit: Arrest for Not Leaving Sidewalk Entitled to Qualified Immunity

by Mark Wilson

The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reversed a lower court’s denial of qualified immunity to police for arresting a man for stopping on the sidewalk to speak with Occupy Wall Street protestors.

On September 17, 2013, protestors gathered in New York City’s Zuccotti ...



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