When I saw that it was a death penalty habeas case, and that Judge Berzon had written the opinion, I felt I had a reasonable guess as to how it might come out. When I saw that Judges Reinhardt and Gould were on the panel, and that neither had dissented, I felt even more strongly that I knew where this one was going.
But as I started to read the syllabus, I began to falter. Deficient representation, sure. But no prejudice. No prejudice again.
Could it be? Could this panel really affirm a death penalty case?!
Fear not. I finally reach the end of the syllabus. The conviction gets ratified. But the death sentence gets reversed.
Which is what one might have guessed purely from the caption.