Thursday, March 08, 2012

OBJECTION

The Sixth Circuit issued two published opinions yesterday, found here and here. Each has a nugget of useful law interpretation. Both remind us of a simple word that attorneys just don't seem to say enough:


Objection.


There are tactical reasons not to object. And sometimes, there is no good faith basis for an objection. But defense counsel need to be guarding their record and preserving issues for appeal. That is done by objecting.


As United States v. Osborne, 09-5276, reminds us, if you want to preserve your arguments for a motion to suppress, you MUST object to the magistrate judge's report and recommendations. Failure to file an objection will prompt the district court "to conclude... [defendant] forfeited any objection to the recommendation and... deny his motion to suppress."


Also, if you have a problem with the court giving - or not giving - a particular jury instruction, you MUST object.


United States v. Jones, 09-6549, reminds us if you do not object to the presentence report, you accept all of the factual allegations contained in it. Furthermore, if you don't object to your sentence in court, later claims will be reviewed for plain error.


The legal interpretation nuggets:

Osborne - the within 1000' of a school must be proven to the jury beyond a reasonable doubt.

Jones - great discussion of the analysis to use when looking at old convictions for ACCA purposes.

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