SCOTUSBlog's petition of the day highlights the pending petition for certiorari in White v. United States, No. 17-270 (U.S. Aug. 17, 2017), which asks
"[w]hether, under the Speedy Trial Act, time engaged in a plea negotiation that does not result in a finalized plea agreement is automatically excludable as "other proceedings concerning the defendant" under 18 U.S.C. SS 3161(h)(1), as four circuits hold; or whether such time is excludable only if the district court makes case-specific "ends of justice" findings under 18 U.S.C. SS 3161(h)(7), as four other circuits hold.
The courts of appeals are sharply divided on this important and recurring issue. The Fourth, Sixth, Seventh, and Eighth Circuits hold that time spent in plea negotiations that do not result in a finalized plea agreement is automatically excludable as "other proceedings" under SS 3161(h)(1). See United States v. Leftenant, 341 F.3d 338, 344-345 (4th Cir. 2003); United States v. Van Someren, 118 F.3d 1214, 1218-1219 (8th Cir. 1997); United States v. Bowers, 834 F.2d 607, 610 (6th Cir. 1987), United States v. Montoya, 827 F.2d 143, 150 (7th Cir. 1987).
In contrast, the Second, Fifth, Ninth and Eleventh Circuits hold that plea negotiations that fail to yield a finalized agreement are not automatically excluded as "other proceedings concerning the defendant" under SS 3161(h)(1). See United States v. Mathurin,690 F.3d 1236, 1241-1242 (11th Cir. 2012); United States v. Alvarez-Perez, 629 F.3d 1053, 1058, 1059 (9th Cir. 2010); United States v. Lucky, 569 F.3d 101, 107 (2d Cir. 2009); United States v. Velasquez, 890 F.2d 717, 719-720 (5th Cir. 1990).
For a copy of the certiorari petition, click here.