Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Amado v. Gonzalez, No. 11-56420 (10-30-13)(Hellerstein, Sr. D.J., with Fletcher; dissent by Rawlinson).

The petitioner was convicted of murder in aiding and abetting a senseless gang shooting on a public bus. The petitioner was placed at the bus stop, but there was no direct evidence that he was a gang member. However, a witness did say he carried a weapon. The prosecutor never turned over the fact that the witness had committed a robbery, was on probation, and was a gang member. The state court thought this was harmless. The 9th held that this was a clear Brady violation and a violation of established Supreme Court law. It was prejudicial because the witness was the only one who saw the gun and was critical. Rawlinson dissented. She would defer to the state's application of Brady, and find that there was no prejudice given the adding and abetting conviction and the witness's own self impeachment at trial, including forgetfulness and failure to identify petitioner at trial.


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