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Name: McQuillion v. Duncan
Case #: 00-55182
Court: US Court of Appeals
District 9 Cir
Opinion Date: 09/25/2002
Subsequent History: None

McQuillion was sentenced in 1973 to seven years to life for a conviction of two counts of murder. In 1979 he was found suitable for parole, and a date of October, 1998 was set. In 1994, the Board of Prison Terms set a parole recission hearing to determine whether the date was improvidently granted without consideration of the gravity of the offense, prior criminal history, psychiatric reports, lack of vocational programming, and lack of remorse. Good cause for recission was found, and the date was rescinded. After McQuillion’s state habeas petitions were denied, he filed a petition in federal court. Here, the Ninth Circuit granted habeas relief. The parole scheme in California under which McQuillion was given his parole date in 1979 gave rise to a constitutionally protected liberty interest. The process that is due before a prisoner can be deprived of such an interest is a showing that there was “some evidence” in the record to support a later recission of that date. Here, the Board’s grounds for recission reflect nothing more than a disagreement with the ultimate determination reached by the earlier panel. None of the “good cause” grounds for the recission of the parole date was supported by “some evidence” of a failure to adequately consider the evidence before it.