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A party waives the right to challenge on appeal a juror’s presence on the jury where the party’s appellate argument is based on facts known to the party during voir dire, the party consciously elected not to pursue - or abandoned - a challenge for cause on that basis, and the party accepted the juror’s presence on the jury. The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant’s conviction of thirteen counts of possession of credit or debit card without cardholder’s consent. The Court held (1) Defendant waived his appellate argument of juror bias as to two jurors he passed for cause below; and (2) the district court erred by denying one of Defendant’s challenges for cause as to a certain juror, but the error was harmless and did not warrant reversal. View "Sayedzada v. State" on Justia Law

Posted in: Criminal Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the district court’s denial of Appellant’s postconviction petition for a writ of habeas corpus as procedurally barred without conducting an evidentiary hearing. Appellant was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death. More than one year after remittitur issued from his direct appeal, Appellant filed the postconviction petition at issue in this case. The petition was both untimely filed and successive and, thus, procedurally barred absent a demonstration of good cause and prejudice. Further, Appellant was required to overcome the presumption of prejudice to the State. To overcome the procedural bars, Appellant argued that the State committed a Brady violation, that his attorneys were ineffective during the litigation of his prior postconviction petition, and that he was actually innocent of the death penalty. The Supreme Court affirmed the district court’s denial of the petition without an evidentiary hearing, holding that Appellant failed to demonstrate that the district court erred. View "Moore v. State" on Justia Law

Posted in: Criminal Law

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In this quiet title action, the Supreme Court held (1) a regulated entity like the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) has standing to assert 12 U.S.C. 4617(j)(3) - the Federal Foreclosure Bar (the FFB) - in a quiet title action; (2) the FFB preempts Nev. Rev. Stat. 116.3116, which allows a homeowners’ association (HOA) foreclosure on a superpriority lien to extinguish a first deed of trust; and (3) the FFB invalidates any purported extinguishment of a regulated entity’s property interest while under the conservatorship of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) unless the FHFA affirmatively consents. The Morenos obtained a home loan secured by a deed of trust on Las Vegas Property. The deed of trust was assigned to Fannie Mae. When the Morenos failed to pay their HOA dues, Saticoy Bay LLC Series 9641 Christine View (Saticoy Bay) purchased the property at a HOA foreclosure sale. Saticoy Bay then brought suit against Fannie Mae to quiet title. Summary judgment was granted for Fannie Mae. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the FFB protected the deed of trust from extinguishment because Fannie Mae was under the FHFA’s conservatorship at the time of the foreclosure sale; and (2) absent the FHFA’s affirmative relinquishment, Saticoy Bay’s interest in the property was subject to Fannie Mae’s deed of trust. View "Saticoy Bay LLC Series 9641 Chrstine View v. Federal National Mortgage Ass’n" on Justia Law

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Due process requires junior water rights holders in the Diamond Valley Hydrographic Basin No. 153 (Diamond Valley) be given notice and an opportunity to participate in the district court’s consideration of the request of a vested, senior water rights holder to order the State Engineer to curtail junior water rights in Diamond Valley. Because water in Diamond Valley has been over-appropriated and pumped at a rate exceeding its perennial yield for more than four decades, groundwater levels in southern Diamond Valley have fallen over 100 feet. Sadler Ranch, which claims to be a vested, senior water rights holder in Diamond Valley, petitioned the district court to order the State Engineer to initiate curtailment proceedings regarding junior water rights in Diamond Valley. The Supreme Court granted this writ petition, holding that an upcoming show cause hearing may result in a court order to begin curtailment proceedings, resulting in possible deprivation of property rights. Therefore, due process required junior water rights holders in Diamond Valley to be given notice and an opportunity to be heard before the district court conducted the hearing. View "Eureka County v. Seventh Judicial District Court" on Justia Law

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Striking a prospective juror based on sexual orientation is impermissible under the United States and Nevada Constitutions. The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant’s conviction for robbery and misdemeanor battery, holding that the district court did not commit any error from the time it held a competency hearing for Defendant to when it entered the judgment of conviction. Specifically, the Court held (1) the district court did not err with respect to Defendant’s competency hearing; (2) the delay in Defendant’s subsequent transfer to a psychiatric facility for the purpose of restoring competency to stand trial did not warrant dismissal of the charges; (3) the district court did not err with respect to jury selection and closing arguments; and (4) there was sufficient evidence to support the conviction. View "Morgan v. State" on Justia Law

Posted in: Criminal Law

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Nev. Rev. Stat. 200.604, which prohibits a person from knowingly and intentionally capturing an image of another person’s private area without her consent under circumstances in which she has a reasonable expectation of privacy, does not prohibit a person from copying, without permission, a consensually recorded video depicting sexual acts. Defendant, a police officer, was charged and convicted of violating section 200.604 for copying sexual videos of an arrestee and her boyfriend on the arrestee’s cell phone. On appeal, Defendant argued that there was insufficient evidence to convict him because he did not take a video of the arrestee’s physical body directly. The Supreme Court agreed and reversed, holding that section 200.604 does not criminalize copying a consensually recorded image of a sexual act. View "Coleman v. State" on Justia Law

Posted in: Criminal Law

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A familial placement preference survives the termination of parental rights, but the placement preference is then governed by Nev. Rev. Stat. 128.110(2) rather than Nev. Rev. Stat. 432B.550(5). These consolidated petitions for writs of mandamus challenged a district court order directing that a minor child be removed from her adoptive foster home and placed with maternal relatives based on a familial placement preference under section 432B.550(5). The placement order was entered after parental rights to the child were terminated. The Supreme Court granted the writs, holding (1) the district court erred in applying the familial placement preference under section 432B.550(5) because section 128.110(2) was the applicable standard; (2) the maternal relatives had a reasonable excuse for their delay in seeking placement, and they were entitled to a familial placement preference; but (3) the district court failed to set forth adequate factual findings concerning the child’s best interest or give appropriate weight to the Department of Family Services’ discretion to determine placement under section 128.110(2). View "Philip R. v. Eighth Judicial District Court" on Justia Law

Posted in: Family Law

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The common law absolute privilege has been abrogated by the statutory conditional privilege in Nev. Rev. Stat. 616D.020 in the context of defamatory statements in a workers’ compensation claim to which section 616D.020 is applicable. Appellant filed a complaint against Respondents, the company that employed him and the company's owner, for defamation. The allegedly defamatory statements regarded Appellant’s alleged abuse of the workers’ compensation program to obtain prescription pain medication, a violation of Nev. Rev. Stat. 616D.300. Respondents filed a motion to dismiss pursuant to Nev. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(5). The district court granted the motion, concluding that Respondents’ statements were absolutely privileged. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that the district court erred in concluding that all of Respondents’ statements were absolutely privileged justifying dismissal of the complaint, as a matter of law, without considering the impact of the conditional privilege provided in section 616D.020. View "Fitzgerald v. Mobile Billboards, LLC" on Justia Law

Posted in: Personal Injury

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Nev. Rev. Stat. 600A.030 does not preclude a defendant from demonstrating that certain information is readily ascertainable and not a trade secret even where the defendant acquired the information through improper means. An employee of Peppermill Casino, Inc. accessed slot machines of a casino owned by MEI-GSR Holdings, LLC (GSR) to obtain their theoretical hold percentage information (par values). GSR filed suit against Peppermill and its employee, asserting violation of Nevada’s Uniform Trade Secrets Act. The jury returned a special verdict in favor of Peppermill, finding that GSR’s stolen par values did not constitute a trade secret under section 600A.030 because GSR had failed to prove that its par information was not readily ascertainable by proper means. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the district court did not err in instructing the jury concerning trade secrets under section 600A.030; and (2) GSR’s other assignments of error lacked merit. View "MEI-GSR Holding, LLC v. Peppermill Casinos, Inc." on Justia Law

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Here, the Supreme Court adopted the common interest rule that allows attorneys to share work product with third parties that have common interest in litigation without waiving the work-product privilege. Petitioner shared purported work-product material through emails with third parties who were intervening plaintiffs in the litigation and were suing the same defendants on similar issues. The district court concluded, without reviewing the emails, that Petitioner must disclose the emails based on his insufficient showing of common interest between him and the intervening plaintiffs. The Supreme Court granted Petitioner’s petition for extraordinary relief and directed the district court to refrain from compelling disclosure of the emails before it conducts an in camera review to establish clear findings concerning the work-product privilege, holding that Petitioner and the intervening Plaintiffs shared common interest in litigation. View "Cotter v. Eighth Judicial District Court" on Justia Law

Posted in: Civil Procedure