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OT ’12 grants

Questions presented: 1. Whether the Michigan Supreme Court’s recognition that a state statute abolished the long-maligned diminished-capacity defense was an “unexpected and indefensible” change in a common-law doctrine of criminal law under this Court’s retroactivity jurisprudence. See Rogers v. Tennessee, 532 U.S. 451 (2001). 2. Whether the Michigan Court of Appeals’ retroactive application of the… Read More

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Questions Presented: 1. Do the Constitution’s structural limits on federal authority impose any constraints on the scope of Congress’ authority to enact legislation to implement a valid treaty, at least in circumstances where the federal statute, as applied, goes far beyond the scope of the treaty, intrudes on traditional state prerogatives, and is concededly unnecessary… Read More

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Question presented: Whether or under what circumstances the Fifth Amendment’s Self-Incrimination Clause protects a defendant’s refusal to answer law enforcement questioning before he has been arrested or read his Miranda rights. Lower court opinion (Salinas v. State, 369 S.W.3d 176 (Tex. Crim. App. 2012)) Docket Scotusblog page This case could have a significant impact on… Read More

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Question presented: 1. Whether the court of appeals erred in conducting its constitutional analysis on the premise that respondent was not under a federal registration obligation until SORNA was enacted, when pre-SORNA federal law obligated him to register as a sex offender. 2. Whether the court of appeals erred in holding that Congress lacks the Article I… Read More

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Question presented Whether the court of appeals erred in holding that any degree of judicial participation in plea negotiations, in violation of Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 11(c)(1), automatically requires vacatur of a defendant’s guilty plea, irrespective of whether the error prejudiced the defendant. Lower court opinion (United States v. Davila, 664 F.3d 1355 (11th Cir. 2011) (per… Read More

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Question Presented: The U.S. Sentencing Guidelines Manual directs a court to “use the Guidelines Manual in effect on the date that the defendant is sentenced” unless “the court determines that use of the Guidelines Manual in effect on the date that the defendant is sentenced would violate the Ex Post Facto Clause of the United… Read More

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Question Presented (from cert petition): Does the Fourth Amendment allow the States to collect and analyze DNA from people arrested and charged with serious crimes? Docket Lower court opinion (King v. State, 425 Md. 550, 42 A.3d 549 (2012)) Scotusblog page Under Maryland law, DNA Collection Act, Md. Code Ann., Pub. Safety §2-504, an arrestee’s DNA can be collected and submitted… Read More

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Question Presented (from cert pet): In federal habeas proceedings, undersigned counsel raised for the first time a claim under Wiggins v. Smith, 539 U.S. 510 (2003), that trial counsel were ineffective for failing to investigate the extraordinary mitigating evidence in Mr. Trevino’s life. The federal proceeding was stayed to allow exhaustion, but the Texas Court of… Read More

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