Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Sixth Circuit reversed . . . again

On November 7, the Supreme Court reversed the Sixth Circuit's decision in Dixon v. Houck, in which the Court had overturned the conviction and death sentence of the defendant based upon Miranda violations.  The Supreme Court dealt unusually harshly with the Sixth Circuit in a per curium opinion, finding, for example, that  "according to the Sixth Circuit, the Miranda decision itself clearly established that police could not speak to Dixon on November 9, because on November 4 Dixon had refused to speak to police without his lawyer. That is plainly wrong." (emphasis added)  The Supreme Court dismissed each of the grounds for reversal set forth in the Sixth Circuit's opinion in short, order, and seemed to re-affirm the deference given to state court opinions, finding "Because no precedent of this Court required Ohio to do more, the Sixth Circuit was without authority to overturn the reasoned judgment of the State’s highest court."

The Supreme Court's opinion can be found here.

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