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Criminal Law

Hearing Period’s Expiration Doesn’t Warrant Dismissal (access required)

The Supreme Court affirmed Appellant Joseph Boyd Rickman’s civil-commitment order, even though the required probable-cause hearing took place outside the statutory hearing timeframe. In contemplation of Rickman’s impending release from custody on numerous child sex-crime convictions, the Commonwealth petitioned to ...

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Police Use of File-Sharing Software Not an Unreasonable Search (access required)

The court of appeals upheld the conviction of Appellant Matthew John Stickle, whose possession of child pornography was discovered through the use of a P2P file-sharing program tailored for law enforcement use. Lt. Scott Little, a district coordinator for the ...

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Supervised Release – Continuation Post-Revocation – Successive Revocations – Maximum Sentence (access required)

Revocation of defendant’s supervised release did not terminate his supervised release, so the district court had jurisdiction over a violation report filed while defendant was serving his one-month revocation sentence. Furthermore, the 60-month maximum for a term of supervised release ...

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Appeals – Untimely – First Impression – Sua Sponte Dismissal (access required)

It is the government’s responsibility to raise the issue of the untimeliness of a defendant’s appeal; however, the defendant in this case had already pursued collateral review before he filed his direct appeal more than three years late. This is ...

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Constitutional – Ineffective Assistance – Plain Error Standard – Sentencing (access required)

On direct appeal, this court found no plain error in defendant’s sentencing as a career offender; however, trial counsel’s failure to do research or to object led to a much longer sentence than defendant would otherwise have received. The standards ...

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Vehicle Occupant’s Conviction for Shooting “At” the Vehicle Upheld (access required)

The court of appeals affirmed the conviction of appellant Robert Lee Jones for maliciously shooting at an occupied vehicle in violation of Code § 18.2-154, approving the trial court’s conclusion that, under the statute, a defendant can shoot “at” a ...

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