Weinstein v. Bradford

Citation423 U.S. 147,46 L.Ed.2d 350,96 S.Ct. 347
Decision Date10 December 1975
Docket NumberNo. 74-1287,74-1287
PartiesRobert WEINSTEIN et al. v. Howard E. BRADFORD
CourtUnited States Supreme Court


Respondent Bradford sued petitioner members of the North Carolina Board of Parole in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina, claiming that petitioners were obligated under the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution to accord him certain procedural rights in considering his eligibility for parole. Although respondent sought certification of the action as a class action, the District Court refused to so certify it and dismissed the complaint. On respondent's appeal to the Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, that court sustained his claim that he was constitutionally entitled to procedural rights in connection with petitioners' consideration of his application for parole. Because the conclusion of the Court of Appeals was at odds with the decisions of several other Courts of Appeals, we granted certiorari on June 2, 1975, 421 U.S. 998, 95 S.Ct. 2394, 44 L.Ed.2d 664 and the case was set for oral argument during the December calendar of this Court.

Respondent has now filed a suggestion of mootness with this Court, and petitioners have filed a response. It is undisputed that respondent was temporarily paroled on December 18, 1974, and that this status ripened into a complete release from supervision on March 25, 1975. From that date forward it is plain that respondent can have no interest whatever in the procedures followed by petitioners in granting parole.

Conceding this fact, petitioners urge that this is an issue which is "capable of repetition, yet evading review" as that term has been used in our cases dealing with mootness. Petitioners rely on Super Tire Engineering Co. v. McCorkle, 416 U.S. 115, 94 S.Ct. 1694, 40 L.Ed.2d 1 (1974), to support their contention that the case is not moot. But there the posture of the parties was quite different. Petitioner employer was engaged in cyclically recurring bargaining with the union representing its employees, and respondent state official was continuously following a policy of paying unemployment compensation benefits to strikers. Even though the particular strike which had been the occasion for the filing of the lawsuit was terminated, the Court held that it was enough that the petitioner employer showed "the existence of an immediate and definite governmental action or policy that has adversely affected and continues to affect a present interest," and noted that "the great majority of economic strikes do not last long enough for complete judicial review of the controversies they engender." Id., at 125-126, 94 S.Ct. at 1700. But in the instant case, respondent, who challenged the "governmental action or policy" in question, no longer has any present interest affected by that policy.

In Sosna v. Iowa, 419 U.S. 393, 95 S.Ct. 553, 42 L.Ed.2d 532 (1975), we reviewed in some detail the historical developments of the mootness doctrine in this Court. Southern Pacific Terminal Co. v. ICC, 219 U.S....

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    ...186 Conn. at 253, 440 A.2d 310; Delevieleuse v. Manson, 184 Conn. 434, 437, 439 A.2d 1055 (1981). In Weinstein v. Bradford, 423 U.S. 147, 149, 96 S.Ct. 347, 348, 46 L.Ed.2d 350 (1975), the United States Supreme Court, citing its review of the historical development of the mootness doctrine ......
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    ...action was in its duration too short to be fully litigated prior to its cessation or expiration." Weinstein v. Bradford, 423 U.S. 147, 149, 96 S.Ct. 347, 46 L.Ed.2d 350 (1975) (per curiam). Under the capable of repetition prong, a party must show a reasonable expectation "that the same part......
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