Holland v Allbaugh

Holland was granted habeas relief based on admission of a confession and testimony about his Nazi tattoos and ineffective assistance of counsel for failure to object to eth evidence. The panel reversed. It held the Supreme Court precedent relied upon by the district court applies to victim impact statements, not admission of evident at trial and is at most a general statement of law which cannot be the basis of a finding that state court makes a decision contrary to established precedent. The panel alternatively held that the Oklahoma state court decision here was not unreasonable as the statement that one of the defendants did it and did not associate with black guys incriminated the brother and testimony about the tattoos supported a finding that Holland entered a house without permission which was an element of one of the crimes charged. The panel reversed the ineffective assistance findings holding the statements about racial prejudice and the evidence about the tattoos were relevant and not overly prejudicial and thus there was no violation in not objecting and the confession that brother did the robbery was harmless error as substantial eyewitness and circumstantial evidence connected the brother and Holland to the robbery.

Smith v Duckworth

Smith appealed denial of his habeas motion challenging his death sentence. The panel affirmed.it held Oklahoma’s courts did not unreasonably hold that Smith’s challenge to his death sentence based on intellectual disability was without merit because even with a required reduction in IQ scores to take into account statistical range of error, Smith had a test above 70 and there is no law requiring adjustment for the supposed increase in intelligence among a population. It held there was no basis to grant relief based on Smith’s Miranda waiver as the state trial judge gave a detailed discussion of Smith’s low intelligence a as part of the analysis of the waiver and there is no precedent requiring eh trial court judge to receive expert testimony on the issue. The panel held there was no prejudice in the factual findings about the family and social history mitigation evidence not presented at sentencing because Smith failed to prove that any finding of inadequate investigation led to the allegedly unreasonable finding of no prejudice as smith did not undertake to reweigh the evidence and demonstrate a likelihood of a different outcome. The panel held the findings about the lack of prejudice from not presenting drug use and brain damage evidence as Smith selectively quoted his experts leaving out an alternative potential cause of his intellectual disability, consideration of whether mental health evidence could be detrimental to Smith was allowed under Supreme Court precedent and Smith failed to demonstrate why it was unreasonable to conclude the drug abuse and brain damage evidence was not before the jury in a way to make the additional evidence only helpful to Smith. It finally held there was no error proven and thus no cumulative error exists.