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Criminal and Property Law Matters

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By FindLaw Staff on March 16, 2010 1:54 PM

Quigley v. Winter, No. 08-3630, involved a sexual harassment action against plaintiff's landlord under the Fair Housing Act.  The court of appeals affirmed judgment for plaintiff in part on the grounds that 1) defendant could not show "a complete absence of probative facts" supporting the jury's verdict and that no reasonable jury could have found in plaintiff's favor; 2) the jury could reasonably infer that defendant was telling plaintiff the return of her deposit was conditioned upon defendant seeing more of plaintiff's body or even receiving a sexual favor; and 3) even if the admission of evidence regarding a government investigation of defendant was an error, any possible prejudice was cured by the district court's instruction.  However, the court reversed the judgment in part on the ground that the district court erred in the degree to which it reduced the jury's punitive damage award failed to conduct a proper analysis of plaintiff's entitlement to attorney fees.

In US v. Rector, No. 09-1190, the court of appeals affirmed defendant's convictions for possessing, distributing, and receiving child pornography, holding that defendant's prosecution did not violate the Speedy Trial Act because the district court properly held that a continuance would serve the ends of justice by allowing: 1) the defendant to retain new counsel; and 2) counsel to seek admission to the district and prepare for trial.

In US v. Myers, No. 09-1621, the court of appeals affirmed defendant's sentence for failing to register as a sex offender in violation of 18 U.S.C. section 2250(a), holding that 1) the harm of defendant's prior conviction was not fully accounted for by either Guideline at issue alone, so no double-counting occurred; and 2) even if double-counting occurred in this case, it was permissible because the Sentencing Commission intended the result, and the offense level and criminal history sections address different concerns.

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