Stanley v Gallegos

Gallegos appealed the denial of his qualified immunity motion. The panel, with one judge concurring in judgment only and one in result only, reversed and remanded. The lead opinion noted that it is an open question as to whether the 10th Circuit will recognize an exception to immunity based on acts unauthorized by state law and argued that the scope of authority exception was not required under Supreme Court precedent, involved significant challenges of deciding when an act was unauthorized and when it merely violates state law, that Gallegos here is a prosecutor and the concerns about deterring vigorous actions in the public interest and the impairment of the public interest in requiring pubic officials to go to trial are implicated here. However, the lead opinion argued that even if the exception applied, it should be limited to situations where the state law is clear at the time of the act that eth act is unauthorized and here New Mexico law allows prosecutors to interrogate prisoners and do other police like actions and thus the removal of two gates from a roadway were not unauthorized ad remand was required to evaluate the immunity defense. Judge Holmes concurred in judgment arguing that qualified immunity is an issue of federal law and the Supreme Court has rejected any state law thresholds before immunity applies. Judge Matheson concurred in result arguing that the issue is open and the district court erred in concluding the 4th Circuit test used by the parties was satisfied and thus remand was necessary to determine the qualified immunity issue.

Budder v Addison

Budder appealed the denial of habeas petition arguing his consecutive life sentence with parole for non-homicide crimes committed as a minor were unconstitutional. The panel reversed. It held that applicable United States Supreme Court precedent held that all sentencing for juvenile offenders in non-homicide cases must allow a realistic opportunity obtain release and the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals unreasonably applied that law when it affirmed consecutive life sentences with parole as the effect was to make Budder wait almost 132 years before being eligible for release and that is not a realistic opportunity. The case was remanded with instructions to grant habeas and order resentencing within a reasonable time.