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Supreme Court Rejects Strict IQ Cutoff for Evaluation of Intellectual Disability in Capital Cases - May 27, 2014   
On May 27, 2014, in Hall v. Florida (12-10882), the United States Supreme Court clarified the standards by which courts should consider whether capital defendants are intellectually disabled (mentally retarded) and therefore ineligible for the death penalty. The Court’s holding struck down Florida’s rigid rule declaring that any person with an IQ score above 70 could not be intellectually disabled as being in violation of its 2002 decision in Atkins v. Virginia, 536 U.S. 304 (2002), declaring that the Eighth Amendment prohibits capital punishment for the mentally retarded. The opinion can be read here. (Click the arrow above to expand.)

Court affirms denial of relief (U.S. v. Purkey, 8th Cir.) - Sep. 6, 2013   
On September 6, 2013, the Eighth Circuit affirmed the denial of § 2255 relief in the case of Wesley Ira Purkey v. United States. The court's opinion can be read here.

Denial of relief affirmed in three 2255s in last 30 days - August 7, 2013   

Three different circuit courts affirmed the denial of relief in 2255 cases in the last 30 days. On July 10, 2013, the Eleventh Circuit affirmed Meier Brown v. United States; on July 31, 2013, the Eighth Circuit affirmed Norris Holder v. United States; and on August 5, 2013, the Fifth Circuit affirmed Alfred Bourgeois v. United States. Please click on the hyperlinked cases names to view the opinions.


Court affirms grant of sentencing relief (US v. Sampson, 1st Cir.) - July 25, 2013   

On July 25, 2013, the First Circuit affirmed the district court's grant of penalty phase relief based on juror misconduct in the capital 2255 case of United States v. Sampson. The court's opinion can be read here. (Click the arrow above to expand.)

Court resentences Darryl Johnson to life (N.D. Ill.) - April 9, 2013   

On April 9, 2013, the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois formally resentenced Darryl Johnson to life without possibility of release. (Click the arrow above to expand.)

Court grants relief on Brady claim (David Jackson v. U.S., E.D. Tex.) - Mar. 25, 2013   
On March 25, 2013, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas granted relief in the capital § 2255 case of David Lee Jackson v. United States, after the government confessed error on a sentencing-phase Brady claim. (Click the arrow above to expand.)

Federal Death Row -- Current Population by State

1st Circuit: 0 7th Circuit: 2
Hover over the state to display
the state's federal death row count.
2nd Circuit: 3 8th Circuit: 11
3rd Circuit: 1 9th Circuit: 4
4th Circuit: 14 10th Circuit: 2
5th Circuit: 12 11th Circuit: 5
6th Circuit: 3 D.C. Circuit: 0