Tag Archives: Criminal justice

When Is a Guideline Not a Guideline?: Supreme Court Says Sentencing Guidelines Have Force of Law for Ex Post Facto Purposes

BY MATTHEW E. KOHEN — On June 10, 2013, the Supreme Court of the United States issued its opinion in Peugh v. United States. This case—involving the retroactive application of U.S. Sentencing Guidelines—implicates interesting constitutional concerns. In a term where some of the opinions issued (see, e.g., Salinas v. Texas and Maryland v. King) caused […]

Murderer’s Sex Change: Cruel, Or Just Unusual?

BY KELLY HEARD — When the Honorable Mark L. Wolf, a Massachusetts District Court judge, recently handed down a landmark ruling that Massachusetts taxpayers must foot the bill for a prisoner’s gender reassignment surgery, outrage ensued. Senator Scott Brown referred to the ruling as “an outrageous abuse of taxpayer dollars.” Brown’s opponent and Harvard Law School professor Elizabeth […]