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Criminal Law

CAV: Failure to follow police commands justified seizure (access required)

Despite officers shouting at the defendant to put his hands up, he wasn’t seized for Fourth Amendment purposes until they physically removed him from his car. Because the seizure was justified by concern that the defendant was concealing a firearm, ...

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CAV: No “similar” offense needed for “sexually violent” label (access required)

Because the defendant had been required by the State of Idaho to register with the state’s sex-offender and crimes-against-minors registry, Virginia law classifies him as a sexually violent offender who must re-register every 90 days. Background In 2004, Appellant Thomas ...

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CAV: Probation could be delayed pending unrelated jail time (access required)

The trial court did not err in abating the defendant’s probation term during her active incarceration for an unrelated crime, without following the notice and hearing requirements of Code § 19.2-304. Background On May 31, 2013, Appellant Lanikki Edwards entered ...

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EDVA: Habeas petitioner shows ineffective assistance (access required)

A defendant convicted of second-degree murder, malicious wounding, and two counts of using a firearm in the commission of a felony showed that his trial counsel never conveyed a favorable plea deal that had been offered by the Commonwealth, despite ...

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4th Cir.: Va.’s obstruction offense not a crime of moral turpitude (access required)

The Board of Immigration Appeals erred in concluding that Virginia’s obstruction-of-justice offense qualified as a “crime involving moral turpitude” that heightened the burden on an immigrant petitioner challenging his removal. Background Petitioner Jose Ramirez, a citizen of El Salvador, first ...

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SCV: Malicious wounding intent shown by violent act itself (access required)

A defendant’s intent to maim, disfigure, disable, or kill could be inferred solely from the act of pistol-whipping his victim before stealing the victim’s money. Background On March 4, 2014, Otis White Jr. went to visit Appellee Marquez Perkins’s mother, ...

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CAV: Emotional manipulation forfeited right to confrontation (access required)

By repeatedly violating a no-contact order to guilt his partner into refusing to testify against him, a domestic-abuse defendant forfeited his Sixth Amendment right to exclude her testimonial hearsay statements to law enforcement. Background Appellant Kevin Cody and Rebekka Weingarten ...

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4th Cir: Attempts to confuse witness supported tampering conviction (access required)

Although the defendant advised a federal witness to just “tell the truth,” a jury reasonably found that her motives were criminal when she met the witness at the request of their mutual friend who was facing trial. Background In 2014, ...

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