Issue: (1) Whether the Court should modify Mickens v. Taylor to apply the automatic reversal rule in Holloway v. Arkansas where (a) the prosecution advises a trial court that the appointment of a particular lawyer in a capital case to represent multiple defendants may create a conflict of interest; (b) the appointed lawyer informs the court that he is financially unable to appoint capitally certified counsel for each of the co-defendants; (c) the court acknowledges these conflicts of interest, but delegates resolution of them to the same lawyer; (d) the conflicted attorney then advocates in a manner intended to prevent death sentences for the co-defendants; and (e) the trial court declines to intervene; and (2) whether the Louisiana Supreme Court’s opinion finding no "actual conflict" in this case demonstrates the need for this Court to address the split in the Circuit Courts concerning the standard for determining whether "an actual conflict of interest adversely affected [a] lawyer’s performance" and thereby settle an important question of federal constitutional law.
On Monday the Court issued orders from its April 17 Conference, which Lyle reported on. On Tuesday at 10 a.m. we expect one or more opinions in argued cases. We will be live-blogging at this link . The Court has not yet announced whether there will be additional opinion announcements on Wednesday. This is the first week of the April sitting.
Glossip v. Gross The constitutionality under the Eighth Amendment of using a sedative as the first drug in a death penalty protocol.