Washington Supreme Court Decisions

Browse Opinions From the Washington Supreme Court


Recent Decisions From the Washington Supreme Court

In re Pers. Restraint of Phelps (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: February 22, 2018
Docket Number: 94185-8

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Washington Supreme Court centered on whether a prosecutor's closing argument asserting a victim was "groomed" by the defendant, where testimony of grooming was disallowed during trial, constituted fl...

John Doe G v. Dept. of Corr. (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: February 22, 2018
Docket Number: 94203-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Pro se petitioner Donna Zink and the Washington Department of Corrections (DOC) sought reversal of a published Court of Appeals decision, which affirmed the trial court's summary judgment ruling in favor of respondents,...

Washington v. Lopez (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: February 15, 2018
Docket Number: 94418-1

Justia Opinion Summary: The trial court found that Oscar Lopez's lawyer was "fairly obvious[ly]" "severely handicapped" by depression during the pretrial and trial phases of Lopez's case. That finding was supported by the trial court's own obse...

In re Pers. Restraint of Arnold (Majority)  
Date: February 15, 2018
Docket Number: 94544-6

Justia Opinion Summary: Eddie Arnold challenged his conviction for failure to register as a sex offender, in violation of ROW 9A.44.130. He argued he was not required to register because his 1988 conviction of statutory rape in violation of a s...

In re Pers. Restraint of Fero (Majority, Concurrence, Dissent and Concurrence/Dissent)  
Date: February 1, 2018
Docket Number: 92975-1

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2002, Heidi Fero called emergency responders seeking help for an injured child. Minutes later, paramedics arrived and found fifteen-month-old Brynn Ackley unconscious and limp, with bruising on her face. Brynn's treat...

Washington v. Buckman (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: February 1, 2018
Docket Number: 93545-9

Justia Opinion Summary: Brian Buckman pleaded guilty to second degree rape of a child. After sentencing, Buckman learned that he had been misinformed of the sentencing range that applied to him. Based on this misinformation, Buckman sought to w...

Washington v. Petterson (Majority)  
Date: February 1, 2018
Docket Number: 94439-3

Justia Opinion Summary: Erik Petterson has been serving a term of community custody under a special sex offender sentencing alternative (SSOSA) for over 15 years. After Petterson successfully completed treatment, the court removed most of his c...

Sprague v. Spokane Valley Fire Dep't (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: January 25, 2018
Docket Number: 93800-8

Justia Opinion Summary: The Spokane Valley Fire Department (SVFD) fired Captain Jonathan Sprague for persistently including religious comments in e-mails that he sent through the SVFD computer systems and items he posted on the SVFD electronic...

In re Pers. Restraint of Sandoval (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: January 18, 2018
Docket Number: 92412-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Eduardo Sandoval was a member of the Tacoma-based Eastside Lokotes Surefios (ELS) gang. In a stolen van, ELS members pulled up to a car and fired no less than 12 gunshots from at least two firearms into the pa...

Inland Empire Dry Wall Supply Co. v. W. Sur. Co. (Majority)  
Date: January 18, 2018
Docket Number: 94118-1

Justia Opinion Summary: This case involved an issue of whether the purchaser of a lien release bond was an indispensable party in an action under chapter 60.04 RCW by a lien claimant against the surety of the release bond. Inland Empire Dry Wal...

Roake v. Delman (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: January 11, 2018
Docket Number: 93456-8

Justia Opinion Summary: This case involved interpretation of chapter 7.90 RCW, the Sexual Assault Protection Order (SAPO) Act. In this case, the commissioner granted petitioner Megan Roake's temporary SAPO, and it was served. Respondent Maxwell...

In re Pers. Restraint of Serano Salinas (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: January 4, 2018
Docket Number: 91905-4

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue this case presented for the Washington Supreme Court’s review centered on whether the invited error doctrine applied to Hector Serano Salinas's personal restraint petition (PRP), which argued for the first time...

Douglass v. Shamrock Paving, Inc. (Majority)  
Date: December 21, 2017
Docket Number: 94087-8

Justia Opinion Summary: Landowners Harlan and Maxine Douglass (Douglass) brought a private right of action against Shamrock Paving Inc. under the Model Toxics Control Act (MTCA), chapter 70.105DRCW, to recover costs incurred from an alleged rem...

Wright v. Lyft, Inc. (Majority)  
Date: December 14, 2017
Docket Number: 94162-9

Justia Opinion Summary: Kenneth Wright received an unsolicited text message that appeared to come from an acquaintance inviting him to download Lyft's cellphone application. Wright sued as a putative class member. The federal district court has...

City of Spokane v. Horton (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: December 7, 2017
Docket Number: 93788-5

Justia Opinion Summary: In February 2015, the city of Spokane (City) enacted an ordinance that granted a local property tax exemption to senior citizens and disabled veterans. Relying on a letter by the Washington Department of Revenue (DOR), t...

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