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Criminal Legal News: January, 2021

Issue PDF
Volume 4, Number 1

In this issue:

  1. The Infuriating History of Why Police Unions Have So Much Power (p 1)
  2. Wrongly Convicted North Carolina Man Released After 44 Years in Prison (p 11)
  3. Law Review Article: Plea Bargains Lack Transparency (p 12)
  4. Eleventh Circuit Holds RICO Conspiracy Doesn’t Qualify as Crime of Violence for § 924(c) Purposes and Defendant’s 120-Year Sentence Was Procedurally Unreasonable (p 14)
  5. Nevada Supreme Court: Search Invalid Where Police Failed to Properly Inventory Bag (p 15)
  6. Don’t Call the Cops. Especially if Your Loved Ones Are Old, Disabled or Have Special Needs (p 16)
  7. Ninth Circuit Announces Panels of Court of Appeals May Fashion Remedy When District Court Commits Daubert Error (p 18)
  8. Hawai’i Supreme Court: Search Unreasonable Where Officers Knocked and Announced Their Presence Four Times Within 25 Seconds, Then Forced Entry (p 19)
  9. Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Announces Use of Pole Cameras for Extended Surveillance of Residence Constitutes Search Under State Law (p 20)
  10. Kentucky Supreme Court: Criminal Defendant Has Right to Independent Counsel During In-Chambers Hearing on Fitness of Defense Counsel (p 21)
  11. Washington Supreme Court: Prosecutor’s War on Drugs Comments Denies Fair Trial (p 22)
  12. Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Vacates Guilty Plea Conditioned on Waiving Right to Pursue Claim Racial Bias Infected Jury Deliberations (p 22)
  13. Tenth Circuit: District Court’s Failure to Justify Special Condition Was Plain Error (p 24)
  14. Louisiana Supreme Court: Statute Compelling Registered Sex Offenders to Carry ID Emblazoned with ‘SEX OFFENDER’ Unconstitutional (p 24)
  15. Denver 911 Calls Routed to Mental Health Professionals (p 25)
  16. Ninth Circuit: District Court Abdicated Daubert Gatekeeping Function by Failing to Make Reliability Findings on Expert Witness’ Testimony (p 26)
  17. Arizona Supreme Court: Stipulated Plea Agreement Cannot Bar Review of Illegal Sentence (p 26)
  18. Ninth Circuit Reiterates Presumption of Innocence Remains Until Conviction, Grants Habeas Relief (p 28)
  19. Pennsylvania Supreme Court: No Probable Cause to Search Cellphones Merely Possessed in Proximity to Drugs and Guns (p 28)
  20. Third Circuit: No Categorical Ban on Reliability of Recantations as New Evidence (p 29)
  21. First Circuit: Prosecution Under Puerto Rico and Federal Law for Same Drug Offense Constitutes Double Jeopardy (p 30)
  22. Fifth Circuit: Special Conditions of Supervised Release That Barred Use of Internet, Computers, and Electronic Devices for 10 Years Not Substantively Reasonable (p 30)
  23. Court of Appeals of Maryland Clarifies Issues Involving Plea Agreements and Sentence Modifications Under Justice Reinvestment Act (p 32)
  24. 7th Circuit: Ice Methamphetamine Sentence Enhancement Requires Proof of Purity (p 32)
  25. Illinois Law Firm Offers Web Application to Help Automate Expungement (p 33)
  26. Sixth Circuit: Probation Officer’s Warrantless Search of Probationer’s Cellphone Violated Fourth Amendment (p 34)
  27. New Mexico Supreme Court Clarifies Meaning of Key Terms in Aggravated Fleeing From Law Enforcement Statute (p 34)
  28. New York Court of Appeals Clarifies When Police May Conduct Traffic Stops (p 35)
  29. Sixth Circuit: Savings Clause Available for Retroactive Case of Statutory Interpretation Decided While § 2255 Motion on Appeal (p 36)
  30. Ninth Circuit: Asking Single Objectionable Question Insufficient to Justify Termination of Defendant’s Right to Pro Se Representation (p 37)
  31. In New York, Former Prisoners With Mental Illnesses Lack Needed Support (p 38)
  32. Lawsuit Challenges DEA Cash Seizures (p 38)
  33. Futuristic Crime Predictor Targets, Monitors People Across Florida County (p 39)
  34. Who Pays for Police Surveillance? (p 40)
  35. First Step Act Relief Shows Modest Results (p 40)
  36. Retiree’s Home Taken for $8.41 Tax Bill Draws Michigan Supreme Court Ire (p 41)
  37. They’re Not Secret Police, Just Police (p 41)
  38. Georgia Supreme Court Affirms Right to Resist Unlawful Arrest and Announces Right Includes Use of Proportionate Force Against Government Property (p 42)
  39. A New Style of Crime Documentary (p 43)
  40. Report: Judicial System Gives Cops a Pass in New Jersey, Elsewhere (p 44)
  41. Startup Surveils Communities of Color for Police Using Twitter (p 45)
  42. Michigan Supreme Court Reverses Murder Conviction Due to Unreliable, Suggestive Showup (p 46)
  43. Effective Crisis Management Without Police (p 47)
  44. Texas Police S.W.A.T. Woman Over Anti-Cop Bumper Stickers (p 47)
  45. Hip-Hop Police Bust Careers, Not Crime (p 48)
  46. News in Brief (p 50)
  47. Mother Calls 911 for Assistance With 13-Year-Old Autistic Son; Police Arrive and Shoot Him (p 50)

The Infuriating History of Why Police Unions Have So Much Power

The uprisings of 2020 might have finally cracked their invulnerability.

by Samantha Michaels, Mother Jones

As the year 1990 came to an end, a fight broke out during a New Year’s Eve celebration at the Juke Box Saturday Night bar in downtown Minneapolis. A 21-year-old white student grabbed Michael Sauro ...

Wrongly Convicted North Carolina Man Released After 44 Years in Prison

Law Review Article: Plea Bargains Lack Transparency

Eleventh Circuit Holds RICO Conspiracy Doesn’t Qualify as Crime of Violence for § 924(c) Purposes and Defendant’s 120-Year Sentence Was Procedurally Unreasonable

Nevada Supreme Court: Search Invalid Where Police Failed to Properly Inventory Bag

Kimberly Marie Nye was arrested after refusing to leave a casino in Elko County. She was secured in a ...

Don’t Call the Cops. Especially if Your Loved Ones Are Old, Disabled or Have Special Needs

by John W. Whitehead, The Rutherford Institute – Commentary

“Anyone who cares for someone with a developmental disability, as well as for disabled people themselves [lives] every day in fear that their behavior will be misconstrued as suspicious, intoxicated or hostile by law enforcement.”
Steve Silberman, The New York ...

Ninth Circuit Announces Panels of Court of Appeals May Fashion Remedy When District Court Commits Daubert Error

Hawai’i Supreme Court: Search Unreasonable Where Officers Knocked and Announced Their Presence Four Times Within 25 Seconds, Then Forced Entry

At 6:15 a.m. on September 4, 2015, officers from the Honolulu Police Department (“HPD”) executed a search ...

Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Announces Use of Pole Cameras for Extended Surveillance of Residence Constitutes Search Under State Law

Shortly after an undercover officer made a controlled drug purchase from Nelson Mora, investigators installed pole cameras (a ...

Kentucky Supreme Court: Criminal Defendant Has Right to Independent Counsel During In-Chambers Hearing on Fitness of Defense Counsel

Terrence Downs was ...

Washington Supreme Court: Prosecutor’s War on Drugs Comments Denies Fair Trial

The Court’s opinion was issued in an appeal brought by Gregg A. Loughbom. He was convicted by a jury in October ...

Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Vacates Guilty Plea Conditioned on Waiving Right to Pursue Claim Racial Bias Infected Jury Deliberations

Tenth Circuit: District Court’s Failure to Justify Special Condition Was Plain Error

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 ...

Denver 911 Calls Routed to Mental Health Professionals

Ninth Circuit: District Court Abdicated Daubert Gatekeeping Function by Failing to Make Reliability Findings on Expert Witness’ Testimony

Arizona Supreme Court: Stipulated Plea Agreement Cannot Bar Review of Illegal Sentence

The Court’s August 12, 2020, opinion was issued in an appeal by Demitres Robertson. She was ...

Ninth Circuit Reiterates Presumption of Innocence Remains Until Conviction, Grants Habeas Relief

The case began in a California superior court in 2012, where Keith Ford stood trial for the ...

Pennsylvania Supreme Court: No Probable Cause to Search Cellphones Merely Possessed in Proximity to Drugs and Guns

This case of first impression came ...

Third Circuit: No Categorical Ban on Reliability of Recantations as New Evidence

First Circuit: Prosecution Under Puerto Rico and Federal Law for Same Drug Offense Constitutes Double Jeopardy

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

Court of Appeals of Maryland Clarifies Issues Involving Plea Agreements and Sentence Modifications Under Justice Reinvestment Act

7th Circuit: Ice Methamphetamine Sentence Enhancement Requires Proof of Purity

Scott Carnell pleaded guilty to a conspiracy to distribute 50 grams or more of meth under 21 U.S.C. ...

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 Mexico Supreme Court Clarifies Meaning of Key Terms in Aggravated Fleeing From Law Enforcement Statute

Roy D. Montano and William Daniel Martinez both were charged with ...

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

Sixth Circuit: Savings Clause Available for Retroactive Case of Statutory Interpretation Decided While § 2255 Motion on Appeal

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

Todd C. Engel ...

In New York, Former Prisoners With Mental Illnesses Lack Needed Support

Lawsuit Challenges DEA Cash Seizures

Futuristic Crime Predictor Targets, Monitors People Across Florida County

Who Pays for Police Surveillance?

First Step Act Relief Shows Modest Results

As expected, the largest group ...

Retiree’s Home Taken for $8.41 Tax Bill Draws Michigan Supreme Court Ire

They’re Not Secret Police, Just Police

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

Christopher ...

A New Style of Crime Documentary

Report: Judicial System Gives Cops a Pass in New Jersey, Elsewhere

Such checks and balances on the judicial front are ...

Startup Surveils Communities of Color for Police Using Twitter

Dataminr’s early backers included Twitter and the ...

Michigan Supreme Court Reverses Murder Conviction Due to Unreliable, Suggestive Showup

Effective Crisis Management Without Police

Texas Police S.W.A.T. Woman Over Anti-Cop Bumper Stickers

Hip-Hop Police Bust Careers, Not Crime

News in Brief

Alaska: A plan to shift the response to mental health crises away from police and into the hands of mental health professionals made strides in November 2020. The Assembly approved money to launch a mobile crisis intervention team. In Anchorage, it would operate at the fire department and be ...

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 ...

 

 

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