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Last week, we blogged about the Big Fall Conference (aka long conference) at the U.S. Supreme Court. After a summer's worth of backlog clogs up the docket with around 2,000 certiorari petitions, the clerks of the Court sort through the chaff, the justices review their recommendations, and less than one percent are granted cert.

Of the 1,845 listed for Monday's BFC, and SCOTUSblog's "Petitions We're Watching" list, here are a few that we're particularly interested in, covering everything from equality (in marriage and employment) to juvenile sentencing:

Ten years after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review their case, and 30 years after they were convicted, two half-brothers have been cleared of a 1983 sexual assault and murder thanks to DNA. Henry Lee "Buddy" McCollum, 50, has spent three decades on death row, while Leon Brown, 46, was serving a life sentence. Both are expected to be released today, reports The New York Times.

Their case is notable for a number of reasons: McCollum's low IQ, said to be in the 60s, puts him at or near the territory for categorical ineligibility due to his intellectual disability. Brown, who also faced the death penalty at the time, was only 15 when the crime was committed (and would also now be ineligible for execution). And though there have been a handful of death row exonerations in the past, this case looks particularly weak in retrospect -- a coerced confession, an overlooked suspect, and little to no other evidence.

But most of all, it is a sarcastic quip about McCollum's case by Justice Antonin Scalia that's attracting attention.

A motion for relief filed halfway through an execution. Why have you never heard of such things? It's probably because most executions don't last two hours -- lethal injections typically take about 10 minutes.

More interesting than the motion itself was the awkward conference call where the judge heard both sides and seemed close to intervening before convicted murderer Joseph Rudolph Wood was pronounced dead in Arizona. As the call ended, the judge noted that this only delays the issue, and that this would have consequences for other plaintiffs.

Indeed. And though the legal arguments here were rejected by the U.S. Supreme Court, one wonders how long it'll be before the issue finally (and perhaps inevitably) climbs its way back onto the docket.

This was a wee bit unexpected.

Late last week, the Ninth Circuit blocked the execution of Joseph Rudolph Wood, at least temporarily, while he pursued First Amendment right-of-access claims regarding Arizona's drugs of choice for lethal injection. On Monday, eleven judges dissented from the denial of en banc rehearing, with Judge Kozinski writing a separate dissent mocking the death penalty generally.

Then the U.S. Supreme Court stepped in and vacated the injunction. And then the Arizona Supreme Court issued a stay. And then they didn't.

How many times have you stared at Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and thought to yourself, "I can't help but wonder ... isn't RBG just an older Carrier Bradshaw?" Of course you have not. But if you understand that reference at all, you'll love the newest Supreme Court parody making the rounds around the Internet.

If you don't, well, we have a list of interesting cases set for the fall. Also, even though we just talked about the death penalty on Friday, the courts are ridin' again, west sidin' again, with the Ninth Circuit staying an execution pending a challenge to a state's secret lethal injection drugs. It's an issue that we've seen crop up repeatedly, nationwide, over the last couple of years, and now, it's a circuit split.

It's also the second anti-death penalty ruling to come from the Ninth Circuit's territory (the other decision was from a district court in California) in less than a week, both of which could end up on the Supreme Court's docket.

A simple title for a simple case with a simple resolution:

Modern cell phones are not just another technological convenience. With all they contain and all they may reveal, they hold for many Americans "the privacies of life," [...] The fact that technology now allows an individual to carry such information in his hand does not make the information any less worthy of the protection for which the Founders fought. Our answer to the question of what police must do before searching a cell phone seized incident to an arrest is accordingly simple -- get a warrant.

That's right: in terms of the Fourth Amendment, the smartphone and even the flip-phone, with all of the data they contain, are not akin to patting down a pack of cigarettes in a suspect's pocket.

Looking for today's opinions in ABC v. Aereo and Fifth Third Bancorp v. Dudenhoeffer? Check out our additional SCOTUS coverage on our Technologist and In House blogs, respectively.

It's another busy Monday on First Street, with opinions handed down in cases involving securities class actions ("fraud on the market"), EPA greenhouse gas regulation (can they do that?) and the mental state of mind required to be convicted of a federal bank fraud statute.

It's a weird assortment of cases, and probably not the ones you were hoping for, but if environmentalism, holding corporations accountable, or making a federal case out of passing bad checks is your thing, read on for the roundup:

Now we're getting to the good stuff. Last week, we helped your insomnia by recapping the juice man's juiceless juice and incomprehensible cross-ideological splits -- not the sort of stuff that anyone but SCOTUS diehards can sit through without being rendered unconscious through boredom.

Fortunately, Monday has arrived, and with it, a questionable gun straw-purchaser holding, an opinion that will allow Ohio's terrible political speech restriction to be challenged, and maybe, just maybe, the collapse of a nation's economy thanks to SCOTUS and Wall Street vultures creditors.

Mondays aren't all bad. Sure, they mean traffic, a return to work, and a desperate need to run to Chotchkie's, but for Supreme Court junkies, at least while the Court is in session, Mondays can bring an orders list full of certiorari grants and denials, plus merits opinions.

We've got all of the above today, and better yet: it's mostly interesting. The Court has declined to address the reporter's shield or privilege in an appeal from a New York Times reporter and author, but will address the touchy matter of gerrymandering congressional districts. The Court also double-reversed the Federal Circuit again, and handed down an opinion in the housewife's revenge via chemical weapons case.

Memorial Day weekend: a time for remembrance, barbequing with family, and perhaps, for the Supreme Court to catch up on backlogged business?

This morning, the Court released decisions in four pending cases, running the gamut of capital punishment for the intellectually disabled, excessive force in police chase shootings, free speech of presidential protestors, and Indian gaming and sovereignty.

It's a mixed bag, and a lot of interesting reading.