Rainwater Law Group

Effective Criminal Defense

Washington v. Ryan, No. 05-99009 [August 15, 2016]

Washington v. Ryan

The 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.

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