Only Dissent in a Case Where the State of Colorado Tries and Fails to Keep Defendants Money After They Have Won Their Case on Appeal
In a recent case decided by the Supreme Court the practice of Colorado retaining money for costs and other fees extracted from defendants after those defendants were found not guilty on appeal was deemed un-Constitutional. As well it should have been. If due process means anything it means that government must return money it collected on the basis of a conviction if that conviction is later overturned.
But Clarence Thomas does not agree. He feels once government has the money it can keep it, even if the person it was taken from was not guilty of committing a crime.
Here it is, plain and simple, well simple minded in Clarence’s view.
In my view, petitioners have not demonstrated that defendants whose convictions have been reversed possess a substantive entitlement, under either state law or the Constitution, to recover money they paid to the State pursuant to their convictions. Accordingly, I cannot agree with the Court’s decision to reverse the judgments of the Colorado Supreme Court.
Here is some reasoning (?) by Thomas the Cruella.
Because defendants in petitioners’ position do not have a substantive right to recover the money they paid to Colorado under state law, petitioners’ asserted right to an automatic refund must arise, if at all, from the Due Process Clause itself. But the Due Process Clause confers no substantive rights. McDonald v. Chicago, 561 U. S. 742, 811 (2010) (, J., concurring in part and concurring in judgment) (“The notion that a constitutional provision that guarantees only ‘process’ before a person is deprived of life, liberty, or property could define the substance of those rights strains credulity for even the most casual user of words”).
See in Thomas’s sick and twisted min the Due Process we are all entitled to is only for ‘process’. And once Colorado said the money was theirs, no defendant had a right to take it back and so there was no due process issue. In the real world this is known as sham law, Catch 22, or more correctly, tyranny.
Thomas has hinted he may step down sometime, and if the fact that Trump is President encourages him to do so, well that might be the one and only contribution of the Trumpman. Of course, Gorsuch may be a Thomas in better clothing, hopefully not.