Washington v. Ryan, No. 05-99009 [August 15, 2016]
en banc court considered Washington notice of appeal that was filed one day
beyond the 30-day limit and his request pursuant
to F.R.C.P 60(b) asking the district court to vacate and reenter its
judgment so that his appeal could be deemed timely. The State argued the Court was without
jurisdiction to consider Washington’s appeal and the Court disagreed. Finding
that district courts have the authority to grant relief from judgment, in this case, both of Washington’s co-defendant’s
received relief from their death sentences. The
Court held that “having considered the interest of finality, the danger of
prejudice to the State, that Washington missed the filing deadline by just one
day, and the absence of any indication of bad faith by his lawyers” it should
grant relief under either Rule 60(b)(1) or, alternatively, 60(b)(6).
Thereby, allowing Washington to file his appeal and have his petition decided
on the merits.