The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit will hear oral arguments at the James E. Rogers College of Law on March 6. The court hears arguments at the law school once a year, and community members are invited to attend.
This year's arguments will take place 10:30 a.m. to noon in the College of Law's Ares Auditorium, Room 164. Event registration and information is available on the College of Law website.
An appellate panel consisting of Circuit Judge N. Randy Smith of Pocatello, Idaho; Senior Circuit Judge William C. Canby, Jr., of Phoenix; and sitting by designation, District Judge Larry A. Burns of San Diego, Calif., will hear appeals of decisions by the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona.
The cases on the docket are:
Lemke v. Ryan
Arizona state prisoner Robert D. Lemke will appeal the district court's denial of his habeas corpus petition. Lemke was charged with felony murder, armed robbery and conspiracy to commit armed robbery. The jury convicted him of theft and conspiracy, and he was sentenced to 52 years. The jury could not reach a verdict as to the murder charge, and the court declared a mistrial. Lemke later pled guilty to murder and was sentenced to life with possibility of parole. He then moved to dismiss the murder charge because his conviction of the lesser offenses meant that he had been implicitly acquitted of armed robbery, the only qualifying offense for felony murder.
Demaree v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
When A.J. Demaree had photos developed at Wal-Mart, store employees contacted local police when they saw nude photographs of children. The Demarees' children were removed from their custody. At a dependency hearing, the local superior court determined that the photographs were taken at the children's bath time and the dependency action was dismissed. The district court held that under Arizona law, Wal-Mart was statutorily immune from all civil liability arising from its employees' report of suspected child pornography. Lisa Demere and others will appeal the district court's summary judgment in favor of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
Case materials are available on the U.S. Courts for the Ninth Circuit website.
At the end of the final argument, the panel of judges will be available to answer general questions from audience members. While judges are prohibited from answering questions about pending cases, they can discuss court operations and the decision-making process.
The court's visit to Arizona Law is coordinated by the Rehnquist Center, a non-partisan center that honors the legacy of Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist. The center is dedicated to encouraging scholarship about, and public understanding of, the separation of powers, the balance of powers between the federal and state governments, and judicial independence.
Seating in the Ares Auditorium is limited. Priority seating is available for law students, attorneys appearing before the court and others with confirmed reservations. Remaining seats will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Photo identification is required for those attending.