ILNews

Court rules counsel was ineffective

Michael W. Hoskins
January 1, 2007
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A criminal defense attorney's failure to severe four burglary cases fell below an objective standard of reasonableness and prejudiced his client, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.

In Darrel M. Maymon v. State of Indiana, No. 48A02-0611-PC-1060, the appellate court reversed a ruling by Madison Superior Judge Thomas Newman in denying relief on a claim of ineffective assistance of counsel at the post-conviction stage.

That trial defense attorney is not named in today's opinion, but the defendant-appellant contended that his trial counsel was ineffective for not severing the cases on four burglary charges - as should have been done because they were joined at trial solely on the ground they were of the same or similar character. He'd been found guilty by a jury for four crimes between June and September 2001, and the Court of Appeals had previously affirmed the convictions on direct appeal.

"Here, the facts of each charge do not demonstrate that Maymon committed a series of connected acts or that the incidents were part of a single scheme or plan," the court wrote today. "He contends that if a severance had been requested, the evidence of the burglaries where thefts occurred would not have been admissible in his trials for the burglaries where thefts did not occur.... We agree."

The court cited Wickizer v. State, 626 N.E.2d 795 (Ind. 1993), which held that evidence of other crimes, wrongs, or acts may be admitted to prove the intent of a defendant only when he or she has alleged a particular contrary intent at trial.

The court affirmed his convictions for two counts of burglary where thefts occurred, but reversed the other pair where thefts didn't happen. This case has been remanded with instruction to enter convictions for residential entry on those two and to sentence him accordingly.
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  1. Well, maybe it's because they are unelected, and, they have a tendency to strike down laws by elected officials from all over the country. When you have been taught that "Democracy" is something almost sacred, then, you will have a tendency to frown on such imperious conduct. Lawyers get acculturated in law school into thinking that this is the very essence of high minded government, but to people who are more heavily than King George ever did, they may not like it. Thanks for the information.

  2. I pd for a bankruptcy years ago with Mr Stiles and just this week received a garnishment from my pay! He never filed it even though he told me he would! Don't let this guy practice law ever again!!!

  3. Excellent initiative on the part of the AG. Thankfully someone takes action against predators taking advantage of people who have already been through the wringer. Well done!

  4. Conour will never turn these funds over to his defrauded clients. He tearfully told the court, and his daughters dutifully pledged in interviews, that his first priority is to repay every dime of the money he stole from his clients. Judge Young bought it, much to the chagrin of Conour’s victims. Why would Conour need the $2,262 anyway? Taxpayers are now supporting him, paying for his housing, utilities, food, healthcare, and clothing. If Conour puts the money anywhere but in the restitution fund, he’s proved, once again, what a con artist he continues to be and that he has never had any intention of repaying his clients. Judge Young will be proven wrong... again; Conour has no remorse and the Judge is one of the many conned.

  5. Pass Legislation to require guilty defendants to pay for the costs of lab work, etc as part of court costs...

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