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CASTORR v. BRUNDAGE - 459 U.S. 928 (1982)

U.S. Supreme Court

CASTORR v. BRUNDAGE , 459 U.S. 928 (1982)

459 U.S. 928

William and Mary Lou CASTORR
John M. BRUNDAGE, etc., et al
No. 82-48

Supreme Court of the United States

October 12, 1982

On petition for writ of certiorari to the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

The petition for writ of certiorari is denied.

Justice WHITE, dissenting from the denial of certiorari.

Opinion of Justice STEVENS respecting the denial of the petition for writ of certiorari.

It is, of course, not possible to explain the reasons supporting every order denying a petition for a writ of certiorari. An occasional explanation, however, may allay the possible concern that this Court is not faithfully performing its responsibilities. Cf. Maryland v. Baltimore Radio Show, Inc., 338 U.S. 912, 917-918, 254-255 (1950) (opinion of Frankfurter, J., respecting the denial of the petition for writ of certiorari). In this case petitioners request the Court to resolve the conflict among the Circuits on the question whether constitutional claims not actually litigated in earlier state proceedings are barred in a subsequent 1983 action.

Page 459 U.S. 928 , 929

The general phrasing of the issue in the petition reflects the wholly unrealistic assumption that neither the character of the federal constitutional claim 1 nor the character of the earlier state proceeding 2 can affect its answer.

The case that gives rise to this petition does not squarely conflict with any previous decision. The Sixth Circuit wrote:

We do not hold that the application of the principles of res judicata and collateral estoppel is mandatory in every case. They are an expression of the policy of federal courts preferring finality, i.e., that litigation at some time must become final. In the face of more important federal policies, however, the preference for fi- [459 U.S. 928 , 930]

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