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Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996

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SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES=Under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act, a state prisoner seeking a writ of habeas corpus from a federal court “must show that the state court’s ruling on the claim being presented in federal court was so lacking in justification that there was an error well understood and comprehended in existing law beyond any possibility for fairminded disagreement.” Harrington v. Richter, 562 U. S. ___, ___ (2011) (slip op., at 13). The Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit purported to identify three such grievous errors in the Ohio Supreme Court’s affirmance of respondent Archie Dixon’s murder conviction. Because it is not clear that the Ohio Supreme Court erred at all, much less erred so transparently that no fairminded jurist could agree with that court’s decision, the Sixth Circuit’s judgment must be reversed.

Cite as: 565 U. S. ____ (2011) 1 Per Curiam SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES DAVID BOBBY, WARDEN v. ARCHIE DIXON ON PETITION FOR WRIT OF CERTIORARI TO THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE SIXTH CIRCUIT No. 10–1540. Decided November 7, 2011 PER CURIAM. Under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act, … Continue reading

SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES =During petitioner Greene’s trial for murder, robbery, and conspiracy, the prosecution introduced the redacted confessions of two of Greene’s nontestifying codefendants. A jury convicted Greene. The Pennsylvania Superior Court upheld the conviction, reasoning that the rule announced in Bruton v. United States, 391 U. S. 123, did not apply because the confessions were redacted to remove any specific reference to Greene. While Greene’s petition to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court was pending, this Court announced in Gray v. Maryland, 523 U. S. 185, that Bruton does apply to some redacted confessions. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court declined to hear Greene’s appeal, and he then sought federal habeas relief. Under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (AEDPA), a federal court may not grant such relief to a state prisoner on any claim that has been “adjudicated on the merits in State court proceedings” unless that adjudication “resulted in a decision that was contrary to, or involved an unreasonable application of, clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States.” 28 U. S. C. §2254(d)(1). Here, the District Court concluded that, because the United States Supreme Court’s opinion in Gray had not yet been issued when the Pennsylvania Superior Court adjudicated Greene’s claim, the condition for granting habeas relief had not been met. The Third Circuit affirmed. Held: 1. Under §2254(d)(1), “clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States” includes only this

(Slip Opinion) OCTOBER TERM, 2011 1 Syllabus NOTE: Where it is feasible, a syllabus (headnote) will be released, as is being done in connection with this case, at the time the opinion is issued. The syllabus constitutes no part of the opinion of the Court but has been prepared by the Reporter of Decisions for … Continue reading

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