facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Judges may determine appeal timeliness

April 25, 2006 at 4:18 PM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, April 25 (UPI) -- In a 5-4 ruling Tuesday in a Florida slaying, the U.S. Supreme Court said federal judges may dismiss habeas corpus conviction challenges as being too late.

The state miscalculated and said Patrick Day, who was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to 55 years in prison, had filed his final post-conviction appeal within 353 days of it being upheld in December 1999, the high court said.

However, a federal trial judge recalculated the time and found the appeal was filed 388 days after the final state ruling -- too late for the one-year limit on such appeals imposed by the 1996 Anti-terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act.

"In appropriate circumstances, a district court may raise a time bar on its own initiative," the majority ruled. "The district court in this case confronted no intelligent waiver on the state's part, only an evident miscalculation of time."

The majority opinion, written by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, upheld a ruling by the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Justices Antonin Scalia and John Paul Stevens filed dissenting opinions.

© 2006 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Featured UPI Collection
trending
Celebrity Couples of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Celebrity Couples of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Most Popular
1
Oregon girl dies at beach after sand pit collapse
2
Ukraine warns of "full-scale war"
3
Israel claims West Bank acreage for development
4
Germany to send arms to Kurds
5
Malaysia Airlines cuts fares after disasters
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback