State of Louisiana v. Darryl Tate, Supreme Court of Louisiana, Docket No. 2012-OK-2763


In this case, the Louisiana Supreme Court addressed whether Miller v. Alabama, 567 U.S. __ (2012) applied retroactively in state collateral proceedings. Darryl Tate was a juvenile convicted of second degree murder, and, as such, was sentenced to mandatory life without the possibility of parole. His conviction became final in 1984. But, in light of Miller v. Alabama, Tate filed a motion seeking re-sentencing.


The trial court denied his motion. However, the court of appeal granted writs, remanding the matter for a sentencing hearing. The Louisiana Supreme Court then granted writs to address the retroactivity of Miller to those juvenile homicide convictions final at the time Miller was rendered. Upon review, the Louisiana Supreme Court found Miller did not apply retroactively in cases on collateral review as it merely set forth a new rule of criminal constitutional procedure, which is neither substantive nor implicative of the fundamental fairness and accuracy of criminal proceedings. Therefore, the Louisiana Supreme Court reversed the ruling of the court of appeal and reinstated the ruling of the trial court.


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