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Grant of Capital Habeas Petition Affirmed, and Contract and Criminal Matters

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By FindLaw Staff on May 28, 2010 12:23 PM

In Thomas v. Allen, No. 09-12869, a capital habeas matter, the court of appeals affirmed the district court's grant of the petition, holding that: 1) there was no Alabama precedent stating that when a capital offender has numerous IQ test scores during the developmental period, and one of those IQ scores is over 70, the court cannot find the offender mentally retarded; 2) petitioner showed, by a preponderance of the evidence, that he had significant subaverage intellectual functioning during the developmental period; and 3) the district court did not clearly err in its determination regarding petitioner's adaptive behavior during the developmental period.

Tiara Condo. Assoc., Inc. v. Marsh & McLennan Cos., No. 09-11718, concerned an action for breach of contract between an insurance broker and the association responsible for managing a condominium tower located on Singer Island, Florida.  The Eleventh Circuit affirmed in part summary judgment for defendant, holding that plaintiff failed to offer evidence that any of the alleged errors made by defendant were intentional or made in bad faith.  Further, the Eleventh Circuit certified the following question to the Florida Supreme Court, holding that "Does an insurance broker provide a "professional service" such that the insurance broker is unable to successfully assert the economic loss rule as a bar to tort claims seeking economic damages that arise from the contractual relationship between the insurance broker and the insured?"

In US v. Cunningham, No. 09-13989, the court of appeals affirmed defendant's sentence for violating his supervised release, following his convictions for conducting monetary transactions over $10,000 in criminally derived property and conspiracy to commit money laundering, holding that 18 U.S.C. section 3583(e)(3) did not violate the Fifth or Sixth Amendments because the violation of supervised release need only be proven by a preponderance of the evidence, and there was no right to trial by jury in a supervised release revocation hearing.

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