Professor Glenn Koppel just returned from the 92nd Annual Meeting of the American Law Institute in Washington, D.C. Professor Koppel, elected to the ALI in 2007, is a member of the Members Consultative Group to the Restatement of the Law Fourth The Foreign Relations Law of the United States. He was also one of eight bloggers who posted comments on the ALI’s Annual Meeting Blog about events at the 2015 Annual Meeting. Among the speakers this year were Margaret Marshall who, as Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Court, wrote the 2003 decision in Goodridge v. Department of Public Health that declared that the Massachusetts constitution does not permit the state to deny citizens the right to same-sex marriage, and James Comey, Director of the FBI, who presented some of the challenges facing the FBI in the digital age.
Professor Elizabeth Jones’ article, “The Good and (Breaking) Bad of Deceptive Police Practices,” has been highlighted in The Wall Street Journal’s Law Blog. The post notes that the New Mexico Law Review has dedicated a special issue to the critically acclaimed television show Breaking Bad, mentions Western State College of Law, and states that Professor Jones’ article “discusses the possible association between Breaking Bad’s depiction of investigative strategic police deception and the Department of Justice’s recent finding of a ‘pattern or practice of excessive force’ by some Albuquerque Police Department officers.” The post includes a link to her article. Covered by lead writer Jacob Gershman, the Law Blog focuses on law and business, the business of law, looks at industry news and legal trends, and includes contributions from reporters and editors at The Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones Newswires.
Professor Jennifer Koh presented at the American Association of Law Schools (AALS) Clinical Conference on “The New Normal: Clinical Education at the Intersection of Immigration and Criminal Law,” on May 5. The concurrent session brought together clinical law professors with criminal and immigration law backgrounds to discuss how law school clinics are reflecting the merger of the criminal and immigration law fields. In her comments, Professor Koh discussed the Western State College of Law Immigration Clinic’s work involving noncitizens facing removal and detention due to prior convictions. She also described the Clinic’s collaboration with the juvenile division of the Orange County Public Defender’s Office, in which the Clinic provides immigration consultations to youth facing juvenile adjudications in Orange County. Her co-presenters were Professors Linus Chan (Minnesota), Ingrid Eagly (UCLA), and Stacey Tauber (Wisconsin).
Professor Robert Molko’s article, “The Law of Unintended Consequences Strikes Again: Does Murder Have a Statute of Limitations Now? The Sky Will Fall Unless the Supreme Court Changes Its Interpretation of the Right of Confrontation,” just published in the Drake Law Review, argues that The Supreme Court’s latest interpretation of the Sixth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution will lead to the creation of a statute of limitations tied to the life of the autopsy pathologist, because it will not be possible to prove the cause of death in murders once the pathologist dies, or is otherwise legally unavailable. 63 Drake L. Rev. 527 (2015). The article further argues that the Court will have to significantly change its interpretation in order to avoid this unintended consequence that would be contrary to the long-held common law doctrine that no statute of limitations exists for murder.
Professor Stacey Sobel’s article, “When Windsor Isn’t Enough: Why the Court Must Clarify Equal Protection Analysis for Sexual Orientation Classifications,” has been published in the Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy. This article explores why the Supreme Court needs to provide guidance for courts hearing sexual orientation discrimination claims under the federal Equal Protection Clause and the differing standards of review applied by courts in sexual orientation-related cases in the past. Professor Sobel’s article concludes that sexual orientation classifications merit heightened scrutiny analysis which would provide fairness, predictability and protection for lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
Professor Philip L. Merkel served as judge for this year’s Jerome I. Braun Prize in Western Legal History competition. The Braun Prize is awarded annually for the best unpublished manuscript on the history of the North American West. As judge, Professor Merkel read and evaluated manuscripts submitted by historians and legal scholars. The winning submission will be published in a future issue of Western Legal History, a publication of the Ninth Judicial Circuit Historical Society.
Professor Kevin Mohr participated on a panel at the State Bar of California Ethics Symposium in San Diego on April 25 that discussed the current project to revise the California Rules of Professional Conduct, which are the principal source of lawyer regulation in California. Professor Mohr serves as the Reporter for the current Rules Revision Commission that has been tasked with reviewing and revising the Rules. It is a position he also held with the previous Commission.