Sunday, April 13, 2008

2008-04-11 Texas Supreme Court addresses criminal con law issue in juvenile case

Supremes split on Miranda rights of juvenile defendant, requirements for effectively invoking right to counsel.

Because Texas has two courts of last resort - one for civil matter, the other for criminal cases - the Texas Supreme Court does not usually deal with constitutional issues arising from prosecution of crimes. Juvenile cases, however, are an exception.

In the Matter of HV, No. 06-0005 (Tex. Apr. 11, 2008)(Brister) (juvenile law, Miranda warning, requirements for effective invocation of right to counsel)
IN THE MATTER OF H.V.; from Tarrant County; 2nd district (02-04-00029-CV, 179 S.W.3d 746, 11-17-05)
The Court affirms in part and reverses in part the court of appeals' judgment and remands the case to the trial court.Justice Brister delivered the opinion of the Court, in which Justice O'Neill, Justice Medina, Justice Johnson, and Justice Willett joined.
Chief Justice Jefferson delivered an opinion concurring in part and dissenting in part, in which Justice Wainwright and Justice Green joined, and in which Justice Hecht joined as to Parts I, III, and V.

This is the first appeal under a 2003 statute allowing appellate review of certain orders suppressing evidence in juvenile justice cases.[1] Because the statute contains no express grant of jurisdiction to this Court, we may review such interlocutory orders only if they fall within our general jurisdictional statutes, which were also amended in 2003. Finding that we have such jurisdiction, we affirm the court of appeals’ opinion in part and reverse in part.

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