US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit Opinions
Sorto v. Davis
Opinion Date: June 15, 2017
Judge: Edward C. Prado
Areas of Law: Criminal Law
The Fifth Circuit had previously issued a nondispositive opinion denying certificates of appealability (COAs) with respect to petitioner's Miranda and ineffective assistance of counsel claims. After reviewing supplemental briefs submitted by both parties, the court held that Texas's corrective process did not effectively protect petitioner's rights under Atkins v. Virginia, 536 U.S. 304 (2002). In this case, new evidence -- a full-scale IQ score of 63 -- rendered his Atkins claims unexhausted. Accordingly, the court held that the district court based its denial of funding to obtain testing on an erroneous view of the law and abused its discretion. The court vacated and remanded for further proceedings.
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