No Rehearing by Supreme Court of Child Rape Case

The US Supreme Court Wednesday rejected requests for reconsideration of its ruling in Kennedy v. Louisiana, where it held that imposing the death penalty in cases not involving murder (in this case, a child rape case) is unconstitutional. The vote was 7-2 to decline the rehearing requests when votes to rehear the case were needed from five out of the nine justices. The Court noted that the subsequent knowledge of a federal military law that allows capital punishment for child rape did not necessitate a rehearing and did not alter the courtÂ’s reasoning and ruling.

The Court had previously held that no federal laws allowed the death penalty in rape cases. The federal military law, an amendment to the Uniform Code of Military Conduct, was first mentioned in an internet blog by a civilian Air Force attorney.