Supervised Release Ruling Raises Issues Of Judges' Powers

By Jody Godoy (June 26, 2019, 9:23 PM EDT) -- The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday that a five-year sentence for a man who violated the terms of his supervised release was unconstitutional, and raised larger issues of when findings by judges, rather than juries, can form the basis for a sentence.

In a deeply split opinion, four justices plus one concurring justice ruled that Andre Ralph Haymond's Fifth and Sixth Amendment rights had been violated when a judge was required to sentence him to five years after the judge found that he possessed child pornography while on supervised release. Haymond's initial conviction had been for possessing child porn, and...

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