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State v. Blazina, et al.

Mr. Blazina was sentenced to 20 months in prison for second degree assault. Attached to his sentence was over $3000 in fees and tens of thousands of dollars in restitution. The Washington Supreme Court held that individualized inquiries of the defendant’s current and future ability to pay must be made before imposing Legal Financial Obligations.

Johnson v. State

Included in the appellant’s sentence was “court costs” of $234. The appellant appealed, arguing that there was insufficient evidence to support the amount of the costs.

Thomas v. City of Gulfport

Harrison County Jail was a modern day debtors’ prison. Officers went to predominantly African American neighborhoods arbitrarily checking people to see if they had paid their court fines and fees.

Bearden v. Georgia

In Bearden v. Georgia, the Supreme Court held that courts may only revoke probation and/or sentence the defendant to imprisonment if the defendant willfully refused to pay.
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