United States v Windom

Windom appealed the denial of his motion to suppress a firearm seized during a traffic stop. The panela affirmed. it held that under the totality of the circumstances, namely a traffic stop around midnight in a high crime area done on the basis of a citizen complaint that a man had flashed a handgun and declared himself a member of  a gang, the officers were justified in pulling out their firearms, pointing them at the car, ordering the driver to toss the keys and ordering all people in the car to exit and lay down particularly as virtually identical tactics have been held reasonable when officers had less reason to believe an occupant of a car was armed and dangerous.

Farrell-Cooper Mining Company v Department of the Interior

Company appealed the dismissal of its complaint seeking review of a mining enforcement order arguing there was subject matter jurisdiction to review. The panel agreed and reversed. It held that under United States Supreme Court precedent, administrate law judge orders become reviewable if the internal administrative appeal process does not render the decision inoperable and joined the majority view of federal courts and agencies that the system used here where inoperability is contingent on a stay by the appeals board makes the underlying order reviewable. It rejected Department’s arguments to the contrary holding the general rule about finality requiring the completion of the internal agency process must yield to the specific rule about inoperability during administrative appeal and cases involving optional appellate procedures are irrelevant.

United States v Kearn

Kearn appealed his child pornography conviction and sentence. The panel affirmed. It held that even assuming it was error to admit the contents of an expert report without calling the expert as a witness, there was no plain error as all the points made concerning the report were made by other witnesses and in context placing a number on the amount of hits from a search for an email handle was irrelevant and Kearn admitted taking explicit photos and there was evidence the emailing of the images to Australia was done from the phone he used to take the photo. It held that admitting lay and expert opinions of law enforcement about whether images were child pornography was helpful as to the factual question of whether the images were child pornography and assisted in understanding why the investigation took place. It held Kearns other bad acts argument failed as the images and other evidence were admitted as part of the case in chief not as other bad acts. It held there was no error in not instructing the jury it must unanimously agree as to which image or video was child pornography as the images are means of offending not elements of the crime. As there was at most one error, there was no cumulative error. It finally held that Kearn forfeited appellate review of the supervised release condition he never contact the victim in this case by failing to raise it at sentencing and not arguing plain error on appeal.

United States v Madkins

Madkins appealed the denial of his speedy trial motion and his sentence. The panel affirmed on the speedy trial claim and vacated and remanded the sentence. It held that while the district court order granting the challenged continuance may not have been sufficient to satisfy the Speedy Trial Act, when combined with the arguments of counsel for the multiple defendants that time was needed to review discovery, consult with other defense counsel, and travel to meet with clients and with the  statements by the district court that the case was complex with 14 defendants, multiple charges and 400 gigabytes of discovery and while the district court discussed its calendar at the hearing, the continuance was not done because of the congested calendar. As to the sentence, the panel held that Madkins prior Kansas convictions for possession with intent to sell did not trigger career offender status as the Kansas statute covers offers to sell as well as intent to sell and thus cover a broader swath of conduct than federal law and noted this holding is consistent with decision of other circuit courts concerning similar state laws. It finally reminded the district court that sentencing guidelines have not been mandatory for over a decade.

Dahn v Amedi and Cramer

Amedi and Cramer appealed the denial of their qualified immunity motions in Dahn’s foster case failure to protect claim. The panel reversed holding circuit precedent has expanded the geographic scope of a failure to protect claim from the county where the removal occurs to the whole state involved but as of the time of the acts alleged here no case had extended the cause of action to situations where one state (Oklahoma here) had custody of the foster child but another state (Colorado) here) employs the case workers like Amedi and Cramer and thus there is no clearly established law and qualified immunity applies.