Pennsylvania’s High Court confirms that Pennsylvania’s mandatory minimum sentencing laws are unconstitutional
In a long-awaited decision handed down this week, the Supreme Court ruled, in effect, that the bulk of Pennsylvania’s mandatory minimum sentencing laws are unconstitutional. In doing so, Pennsylvania’s High Court largely followed the reasoning utilized by the Superior Court in its line of Alleyne decisions. This important case is titled Commonwealth v. Hopkins.
The Legal Intelligencer published an article containing a nice synopsis of Hopkins. The decision’s importance was also aptly described by a Philadelphia prosecutor who submitted a brief in Hopkins that argued in favor of retaining the mandatory sentencing laws:
"[Hopkins is] going to strike them all down . . . .
Going forward, as far as applying the existing mandatory statutes, that’s not going to be possible."
A link to the Intelligencer article is available here: