New opinions — a death penalty affirmance and a case about missing packages

Two published opinions today.

The first involves Antyane Robinson’s habeas corpus challenge to his death sentence. The jurors that decided his fate were told that the alternative to death was life imprisonment, but they were not told that life meant life without parole. The PA courts ruled that juries need only be told about the unavailability of parole if the prosecutor “expressly” argues the defendant’s “future” dangerousness. Today, CA3 affirmed the district court’s ruling denying habeas relief.

The case is Robinson v. Beard. Opinion by Chagares, joined by Vanaskie and Aldisert. Arguing counsel were Matthew Lawry for the inmate and Jaime Keating for the state.

The day’s other case involves missing UPS packages. A company specializing in coins and metals alleged that 27 separate shipments, together worth over $150,000, were lost or stolen by UPS employees. The district court dismissed, ruling that the plaintiffs’ state-law claims were pre-empted, and today CA3 affirmed.

The case is Certain Underwriters v. United Parcel Service. Opinion by Chagares, joined by Rendell and Jordan. Arguing counsel were Robert Cosgrove for plaintiffs and Jerry DeSiderato for UPS.