Supreme Court Ends Appeals in Notorious Abduction Case

The Associated Press

The U.S. Supreme Court turned down an appeal from a man who was a teenager when he was involved in a notorious kidnapping and murder that began at a sandwich shop in suburban Detroit.

Ihab Masalmani has been challenging his no-parole sentence, especially since trial judges now are required to consider life experiences and other factors when teens are convicted of murder. But the Supreme Court on Monday said it wouldn’t take his case.

In 2009, Matt Landry, 21, was abducted from a fast-food parking lot in Eastpointe. His body was found days later in a burned-out Detroit house.

Masalmani, now 29, was 17 at the time. He was convicted and twice given a life sentence, the second time after a Macomb County judge held a new hearing to consider mitigating issues that could have led to a chance for parole.

The Michigan Supreme Court heard arguments about the sentence in 2020 but let an appeals court ruling against Masalmani stand. Three justices who dissented, including Chief Justice Bridget McCormack, said they were troubled by a Macomb County judge’s analysis of Masalmani’s potential for rehabilitation in prison.

In other action Monday, the Supreme Court:

• Sided unanimously with a man who sued after police entered his home without a warrant and seized his guns. Police said that the man was potentially suicidal and that they were performing a “community caretaking” function. The justices said authorities can’t use that justification to enter a home without a warrant.

• Ruled 7-1 that an appeals court should take another look at a lawsuit involving global warming that is in its early stages. Lawyers have been arguing over whether the case belongs in state or federal court.

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