Monday, February 27, 2006
[ State v. Foster, February 27, 2006]
“Ohio’s felony sentencing structure may be severely wounded,” the Court said, “but it is not fatally unsound. Our holdings are limited to areas where the statutes are Blakely-deficient…(and) after examining Ohio’s felony sentencing statutes, we determine that severance of the Blakely-offending portions (appropriate).
The Court’s application of its “Booker remedy” begins on Page 36 of the 46-page decision.
The case is briefed on our website.
Apprendi v. New Jersey, 530 U.S. 466 (2000)
Blakely v. Washington, 542 U.S. 296 (2004)
U.S. v. Booker/Fanfan, 543 U.S. 420 (2005)
· Ohio Sentencing Commission
Tuesday, February 21, 2006
The National Law Journal, February 13, 2006, p. 4.
Available at the Cincinnati Law Library
Thursday, February 16, 2006
The Ohio Attorney General’s Office was quick to respond to the decision, saying it could have “disastrous” ramifications.
· State v. Consilio, 2006 Ohio 649 (Feb. 15, 2006)
· ORC § 2901.07
9th. Circuit U.S. District Court Judge Jeremy Fogel ruled Tuesday that California needed to change the way it carried out its method of lethal injections, staying the execution of Michael Morales.
· State v. Morales
Clarence Hill, last Jan. 25th., was granted a stay of execution by the U.S. Supreme Court, questioning the method used by Florida. Arguments in that case are expected to be heard April 26th., with a decision sometime before July. (CNN article)
Wednesday, February 15, 2006
Last week the Ohio Attorney General’s Office announced it requested and was granted a motion to assist in defending the constitutionality of Revised Code §2950.031, which prohibits a sex offender from residing within 1,000 feet of a school, and gives authorities the right to evict those violating that mandate. The case is Mikaloff v. Walsh, Case 5:06-CV-96, in the U.S. District Court for Northern Ohio, East. A class-action, Mikaloff’s complaint says Ohio’s statute is unconstitutional as applied to those sentenced prior to July 2003, and represents ex post facto legislation.
Its press release on Feb 6th. also mentioned Attorney General Petro’s participation in a similar District Court case last year, here in Cincinnati, also alleging in part that residency requirements represent punitive legislation. [See Coston v. Petro, 398 F. Supp. 2d 878 (2005)].
Meanwhile, Covington, Kentucky is holding public hearings in advance of a proposed city ordinance which will increase the requirement to 2,000 feet from any school or day care in that city, a measure already being done in several other cities such as Des Moines, Iowa. Other towns and cities have forbidden convicted sex offenders entirely.
The “blogsphere” hasn’t been mute, either. The reader may find posts at Prawfsblawg and Kipesquire of particular interest. Prawfsblawg’s discussion centers in part with Doe v. Miller, an 8th. Circuit decision which also tested the constitutionality of sex offender residency restrictions last year, reversing a district court’s having invalidated Iowa’s registry requirements.
Friday, February 10, 2006
The case, a class action suit claiming “systematic failure to provide representation on the issue of defendants’ ability to pay fines and/or costs assessed by Hamilton County Municipal Court, resulting in incarceration despite their inability to pay those fines/costs.” District Court granted summary judgment against the County on the issue of liability, but stayed consideration on a motion for damages until a March 15th. hearing.
Thursday, February 09, 2006
Why is this exciting? District court opinions have been far more difficult to get electronically via the Web than Circuit and US Supreme Court opinions. If you are familiar with Pacer, you do not go to their main Web site and log in, as you might for the US Party Index. Instead, for example, you would go to the court CM/ECF page (here is the District for Southern Ohio) and login using your PACER information. Use the Report page to get "written opinions" and you can run a free search to bring up written opinions. If you run a different search, you'll still be charged for that search (a Docket search, for example) but you won't be charged for viewing the written opinions.
Pacer accounts are free to set up and then you pay as you go.
The resource is organized by category, ranging from deed forms to powers of attorney (general, health and child care) and even a pet law handbook! The forms are from the US Legal Forms company, an online forms database for all 50 states.
You can access the online site with your PLCHC library card (the RED card!), using the borrower number on the back and your PIN (the last 4 digits of your phone number unless you've changed it). If you use the forms and are not a lawyer, be sure to read the disclaimer that "[a]ll forms in this database are provided without any warranty, express or implied, as to their legal effect and completeness. Forms should be used as a guide and modified to meet the laws in your state. Please use at your own risk." You might still want to consult a lawyer for assistance.
Wednesday, February 08, 2006
The proposed legislation, introduced February 7, 2006, would amend part of the Domestic Relations - Children title, Ohio Revised Code §§ 3109.04 and 3109.041.
Tuesday, February 07, 2006
Along with maybe the good news, though, ZDNet has posted news that “hidden deep in President Bush’s nearly $2.8 trillion budget is a proposal to raise some $3.6 billion over the next decade by imposing ‘user fees’ on the ‘unlicensed wi-fi spectrum’….
“The most likely scenario for collecting such a tax would be for it to be imposed on equipment using the WiFi spectrum at the time of purchase…. Or they could just force free WiFi hot spots to impose fees and collect them from libraries and coffee shops.”
FCC budget proposal @ http://www.fcc.gov/Reports/fcc2007budget.html
Friday, February 03, 2006
37 of the 38 states having the death penalty use lethal injection as their method of execution, including Ohio and Indiana. In Kentucky, electrocution remains an option for those sentenced before June 1998.
There are eight executions pending in the month of February, including Glenn Benner here in Ohio on Tuesday. Benner was convicted in 1986 in Summit County for the murder & rape of two women, along with another rape and an assault. His appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court was turned down last March, and according to a Beacon Journal article Benner wasn’t going to ask for clemency.
While the American Bar Association neither supports nor opposes the death penalty, it start its “Death Penalty Moratorium Implementation Project” in 2001, collecting and monitoring material on death penalty issues. As part of that project, a study of Georgia’s handling of death penalty cases recently revealed need for improvement, stating that since the state “ensure fairness & accuracy in every capital case, it should implement a moratorium on executions and death penalty prosecutions” until those issues can be addressed, according to a Law.com article earlier this week.