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Argued: July 12, 2001


This is a death penalty appeal which presents, inter alia, a question as to the method of dealing with a mixed motive Batson challenge. Robert Allen Gattis, a prisoner on Delaware’s death row, appeals from the judgment of the District Court denying his petition for a writ of habeas corpus. Gattis v. Snyder, 46 F. Supp. 2d 344 (D. Del. 1999). The District Court found all of his claims to be procedurally barred, meritless or non-cognizable. However, it found the five claims which it addressed on the merits to meet the standards for a certificate of appealability. These claims are: (1) that trial delays denied Gattis the right to a speedy trial; (2) that his Fourteenth Amendment rights were violated by an improper peremptory challenge; (3) that trial counsel were ineffective; (4) that the sentencing court violated Gattis’ constitutional rights by sentencing him under Delaware’s revised death penalty even though the crime of which he was convicted occurred prior to the statute’s enactment; and (5) that the Delaware Supreme Court denied him due process when it affirmed his conviction and death sentence on collateral review based on a different factual basis from that argued to the jury. Because Gattis has not asked this Court to expand the scope of the certificate of appealability to include any of the other claims he presented in his habeas corpus petition, our review is confined to those five claims.

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