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After years of fruitless appeals, Duane Buck won a decisive victory in the Supreme Court this morning. The Texas inmate had been sentenced to death in part due to expert testimony, presented by his own defense, that Buck posed a greater risk of violence simply because of his race. For almost two decades, Buck challenged that death sentence, most recently by arguing that his counsel was ineffective and that his case merited relief due to the extraordinary circumstances. Today, the Supreme Court agreed, 6-2.

Buck's death sentence, tinged as it was by racism, was "a disturbing departure from a basic premise of our criminal justice system," Chief Justice Roberts wrote from the majority. "Our law punishes people for what they do, not who they are."

Sergio Hernandez died in Mexico, but the bullet that killed him was fired from the United States. The 15-year-old child was shot in the head by Jesus Mesa, a Border Patrol agent, in 2010. Mesa contends that the teen was throwing rocks to distract agents from smugglers. His family says he was simply playing with friends.

Officials declined to prosecute Mesa and the U.S. government refused to extradite him to Mexico, so his family filed a civil suit in the U.S., arguing that Mesa's use of deadly force violated the Fourth Amendment. Now, they're before the Supreme Court, arguing today for the right to pursue their claims.

When a Ninth Circuit panel refused to reinstate President Trump's immigration ban executive order yesterday, the president went straight to Twitter. "We'll see you in court," he said -- in all caps.

We're presuming he means the Supreme Court here. It's possible that an emergency appeal to the highest court in the land will come within a day or two.

But if Washington v. Trump makes its way to SCOTUS, will the outcome change? That's not likely, according to some legal experts.

The Supreme Court will not be reviewing a Fifth Circuit decision that found Texas's voter identification requirements to be discriminatory. Texas had sought Supreme Court review after an en banc Fifth Circuit ruled, 9 to 6, that Texas's strict voter ID law violated the Voting Rights Act. But the Fifth Circuit also remanded the case back to district court, for further consideration of whether the law was intentionally discriminatory.

The cert denial, issued on Monday, won't be the end of the dispute however. As Chief Justice Roberts hinted in a statement on the cert denial, the Supreme Court review is still likely in the future.

When police officers in Washington, D.C. responded to a noise complaint one night in 2008, they found an unusual scene: women in lingerie, money hanging from their garter belts, marijuana smoke wafting through the air. It was something out of a make-shift strip joint, not the empty tableau you'd expect in a reportedly vacant building.

But the partygoers had an excuse: A woman going by "Peaches" and "Tasty" had invited them. And she had, it turns out. But the partiers were arrested for trespassing anyway. Now, nearly nine years later, their case is coming before the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments this morning in Lee v. Tam, the much-anticipated case over trademark registration, free speech, and disparaging names. The Slants, an Asian-American "Chinatown dance rock" band, had its trademark rejected by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The Slants' name, the PTO explained, was the sort of "scandalous, immoral, or disparaging mark" for which the Lanham Act denies trademark protection.

That decision eventually led the Federal Circuit to strike down the act's "disparaging marks" provisions as unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination. That's a ruling that could reach well beyond The Slants -- and straight to the Redskins, the Washington, D.C. football team that has been fighting its own offensive name dispute for years.

The Supreme Court's first opinion of 2017 was released today, a summary ruling in case involving a New Mexico police officer who shot and killed a gun-wielding man without giving a prior warning. Reversing the Tenth Circuit, the Supreme Court found that the officer's behavior violated no clearly established constitutional rights and thus he was entitled to qualified immunity.

The brief, per curiam opinion also contained a warning to the Tenth and other circuits: stick to the narrow confines of clearly established law in qualified immunity cases or risk being overturned.

The Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear four cases from death row inmates facing execution, resulting in a rare dissent from a denial of certiorari by Justice Breyer. In one case, an inmate had spent 40 years on Florida's death row, awaiting an execution that has yet to come. The Berlin Wall was still standing when the man was sentenced to death, Justice Breyer noted. Saigon had just fallen. Over half of all Americans alive today had yet to be born.

In another denied case, an inmate in Ohio had already evaded execution once -- because the executioner could not find a vein through which to lethally inject him. To try again now, after one botched attempt, would be unconstitutional, he argued.

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments yesterday in the case of Moore v. Texas, a challenge to the standards Texas uses to determine whether inmates are too mentally disabled to be executed. In this case, Bobby James Moore was sentenced to death in 1980 for the murder of a grocery store clerk. A court later ruled that Moore was too mentally disabled to be executed, based on modern medical standards. Texas's highest criminal court, however, reversed that determination.

Questions of intellectual disability and eligibility for capital punishment, Texas ruled, must be determined on the state's judicial precedent, which references an outdated medical definition of disability from 1992 and Lennie Small. Yes, that Lennie, the kindhearted but dim-witted character from John Steinbeck's "Of Mice and Men."

A year ago on Sunday, while campaigning in Iowa, Donald Trump said that as president he would "absolutely" implement a registry for Muslims in the United States. He has since denied ever supporting a registry, though his Chief of Staff-in-waiting, Reince Priebus, has refused to rule the possibility out. And just the other day, a Trump surrogate went on TV to argue that such a registry would be perfectly constitutional. His evidence? Japanese internment and the Supreme Court's approval of it in Korematsu.

But Korematsu may not be good law any longer, despite having never been explicitly overturned, according to one Harvard law professor.