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The Ninth Circuit reversed the district court's dismissal of a 42 U.S.C. 1983 action alleging that a pretrial release officer improperly procured a warrant for plaintiff's arrest in violation of her Fourth Amendment right against unreasonable seizures. The panel held that the officer was not protected by absolute prosecutorial immunity for a defective arrest warrant where, given the similarities between his role and those of a parole officer and a law enforcement officer, his action in submitting the bare unsigned warrant should be seen as making a recommendation that the warrant be signed, just like a parole officer recommending revocation or like a police officer submitting documentation for an arrest warrant to a judge. View "Patterson v. Van Arsdel" on Justia Law

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Steven Ford was sentenced to twenty years’ imprisonment for various firearms-possession charges, followed by three years of supervised release. Because of a sex-offense conviction nineteen years earlier, the district court placed sex-offense-specific conditions on Ford’s term of supervised release. Specifically, the court required Ford to undergo a sex-offender assessment, and if recommended by the assessment, to submit to treatment which could include polygraph questioning about his sexual past. Ford contended on appeal that the district court abused its discretion because the sex-offender conditions are not reasonably related to the sentencing factors in 18 U.S.C. 3583. After review, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals held that, notwithstanding Ford’s long custodial sentence and new life sentence for a different crime, Ford’s challenge was ripe for review. Furthermore, the Court determined the district court did not abuse its discretion by requiring Ford to undergo a sex-offender risk assessment as a condition of supervised release. View "United States v. Ford" on Justia Law

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The provision of a New York City licensing scheme (Rule 5-23), under which an individual with a "premises license" for a handgun may remove the handgun from the designated premises only for specified purposes, did not violate the Second Amendment, the Commerce Clause, the fundamental right to travel, or the First Amendment. The Second Circuit applied intermediate scrutiny and held that the burdens imposed by the Rule did not substantially affect the exercise of core Second Amendment rights, and the Rule contributed to an important state interest in public safety substantial enough to easily justify the insignificant and indirect costs it imposed on Second Amendment interests. The court also held that the Rule did not violate the dormant Commerce Clause by hindering interstate commerce; the right to travel interstate where nothing in the Rule prevented plaintiffs from engaging in intrastate or interstate travel; or the First Amendment where plaintiffs failed to demonstrate how the ability to join a specific gun club, or the ability to transport their licensed firearms to a shooting club outside of New York City, qualified as expressive association. Therefore, the court affirmed the district court's denial of plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment and for a preliminary injunction. View "New York State Rifle & Pistol Assoc. v. City of New York" on Justia Law

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Nathan Rolfson appealed after a jury verdict finding him guilty of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Rolfson argued the district court erred in admitting into evidence three foundation documents for the Intoxilyzer test result because the State failed to disclose the documents in response to his discovery request. The North Dakota Supreme Court affirmed, concluding, that although the State violated the discovery rule, Rolfson failed to show significant prejudice resulted from the State's failure to disclose the three challenged documents before trial, and therefore, the court did not abuse its discretion in refusing to exclude the exhibits from evidence. View "North Dakota v. Rolfson" on Justia Law

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Laura Rende appealed after a jury found her guilty of simple assault on a peace officer and driving under the influence. The district court did not instruct the jury to make a finding whether Rende knew the arresting officer was acting in his official capacity at the time of her arrest. A district court's use of jury instructions that fail to include every element of the offense is error. However, that error is waived if defendant invited the error by submitting proposed instructions that also failed to include every element of the offense and if the defendant failed to object to the instructions at trial. "It is a cardinal rule of appellate review that a party may not challenge as error a ruling or other trial proceeding invited by that party. A party may not take advantage of irregularities in the proceedings unless he objects at the time they occur, allowing the district court to take appropriate action." After review, the North Dakota Supreme Court affirmed, because Rende invited the error. View "North Dakota v. Rende" on Justia Law

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Dylan Groce appealed after a jury found him guilty of aggravated assault. Groce argued the district court abused its discretion by quashing subpoenas for two witnesses and denying a motion for mistrial. After review of the trial court record, the North Dakota Supreme Court affirmed, concluding the district court did not err by quashing the subpoenas and did not abuse its discretion in denying Groce's motion for a mistrial. View "North Dakota v. Groce" on Justia Law

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John Isom appeals from a criminal judgment entered after a jury found him guilty of aggravated assault--domestic violence. Isom argues the district court imposed an illegal sentence, abused its discretion in substituting a juror after empanelment, and erred in denying his motion for judgment of acquittal. Specifically, Isom argued the district court imposed an illegal sentence of five years supervised probation when N.D.C.C. 12.1-32-06.1(2) provided a maximum of three years for aggravated assault--domestic violence. Furthermore, Isom argued the district court abused its discretion and committed reversible error under N.D.R.Crim.P. 24 substituting a juror after jeopardy attached. The North Dakota Supreme Court agreed with Isom that the sentence he received was not in accordance with N.D.C.C. 12.1-32-06.1(2). The Court disagreed with Isom’s contention with respect to the juror substitution. The Court therefore affirmed in part and reversed in part and remanded for resentencing. View "North Dakota v. Isom" on Justia Law

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James Kremer appealed an order calling for the forfeiture and destruction of property involved in his criminal convictions for possessing images of sexual conduct by minors. In 2016 Kremer pled guilty to three class C felony counts of possessing prohibited materials. for which he was sentenced to serve ten years in prison followed by three years of supervised probation. During the first year after his release from incarceration, Kremer was prohibited from possessing "any equipment which allows you to access the internet." During the final two years of his probation, Kremer was allowed "to access the internet as per your probation officer." In December 2016, the State moved for the items to be forfeited and destroyed because the State alleged the items had been used or intended to be used to facilitate the commission of a criminal offense and because the items were illegal for Defendant to possess based upon Defendant's sentence in this matter. Defendant argued he did not want to possess the items, but all tax information, personal documents, personal photos, business documents, school e-books and documents, and account information contained on the items needed to be saved, and that after saving such information Defendant's family would then be able to sell the items, and such would not be "illegal" based upon Defendant's sentence. Rejecting this premise, the district court ordered forfeiture and destruction of Kremer's X-Box, PlayStation, laptop, and portable hard drive which were in the custody of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The court found the laptop and hard drive "were used in the commission of the crime" and all four items "were either used in the commission of the crime . . . and/or enable the defendant to have access to the internet, an action specifically prohibited by his Criminal Judgment." The North Dakota Supreme Court determined the district court did not err in ordering forfeiture and destruction of the laptop and hard drive, but erred with respect to the X-Box and Playstation. With regard to the game systems, the State argued the "only way that we know that Mr. Kremer is not going to get these items back and access the internet when he is released from prison is to forfeit them." The Supreme Court found the State cited no authority for its proposition that the possibility defendant might use otherwise unforfeitable property in an unlawful manner after completion of his criminal sentence rendered the property forfeitable. View "North Dakota v. Kremer" on Justia Law

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The State appealed a district court order granting Tyler Fleckenstein's motion to suppress. Fleckenstein was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol (third offense). Fleckenstein moved to suppress the blood test. At the motion hearing, only the arresting officer testified. The district court concluded that the consent to the blood test was involuntary and granted the motion to suppress the blood test. The North Dakota Supreme Court determined the district court misapplied the law by ruling Fleckenstein's consent to a blood test was per se involuntary and thus did not consider the totality of the circumstances. The Court reversed the district court's order and remanded for additional findings of fact and a determination of voluntariness on the basis of the totality of the circumstances. View "North Dakota v. Fleckenstein" on Justia Law

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The State appealed a district court order granting Tyler Fleckenstein's motion to suppress. Fleckenstein was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol (third offense). Fleckenstein moved to suppress the blood test. At the motion hearing, only the arresting officer testified. The district court concluded that the consent to the blood test was involuntary and granted the motion to suppress the blood test. The North Dakota Supreme Court determined the district court misapplied the law by ruling Fleckenstein's consent to a blood test was per se involuntary and thus did not consider the totality of the circumstances. The Court reversed the district court's order and remanded for additional findings of fact and a determination of voluntariness on the basis of the totality of the circumstances. View "North Dakota v. Fleckenstein" on Justia Law