Ineffective Assistance of Counsel

Court affirms denial of PCR for drug offender

May 31, 2017
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Supreme Court has affirmed the denial of an Elkhart woman’s petition for post-conviction relief, finding her ineffective assistance of counsel argument cannot prevail under Indiana law.
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7th Circuit affirms denial of habeas relief

May 23, 2017
Olivia Covington
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed the denial of a man’s petition for habeas relief after finding he waived his argument of ineffective assistance of counsel by not raising that argument in his habeas petition.
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Supreme Court remands 1995 murder case for new trial

May 5, 2017
A man convicted of murder more than 20 years ago will have a new trial after the Indiana Supreme Court held Friday that his trial counsel performed deficiently and his appeal was not barred by the doctrine of laches.
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COA rejects ineffective counsel claim based on judge’s sentencing practices

March 15, 2017
Olivia Covington
A man who pleaded guilty to child molesting cannot prove that he received ineffective assistance of trial counsel, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Wednesday, but the post-conviction court must still address the issue of whether his plea was voluntary.
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COA orders post-conviction court to reduce criminal confinement sentence

March 14, 2017
Olivia Covington
A man who pleaded guilty to criminal confinement will have his sentence reduced by eight years after the Indiana Court of Appeals held Tuesday that his trial attorney’s erroneous counsel led the man to make the decision to reject a previous plea agreement.
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COA rules aggravating factors support consecutive sentences

February 24, 2017
Marilyn Odendahl
A man who tried multiple times to get his sentence overturn was unsuccessful when the Indiana Court of Appeals found the precedent he was relying on was materially different from his situation.
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7th Circuit rejects collateral attack

February 14, 2017
Olivia Covington
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has rejected a man’s petition for collateral relief based on ineffective assistance of counsel because the man failed to allege facts that proved his public defender did not provide proper counsel.
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7th Circuit allows evidentiary hearing on ineffective assistance of counsel claim

February 2, 2017
Olivia Covington
A doctrine allowing prisoners to bring ineffective assistance of counsel claims after a procedural default at the state level applies in Indiana and, thus, entitles a convicted murderer to an evidentiary hearing on his ineffective counsel claim, a divided 7th Circuit Court of Appeals decided Wednesday.
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7th Circuit affirms denial of evidentiary hearing, post-conviction review

January 25, 2017
Olivia Covington
The appointed public defender for a man convicted and sentenced for distributing cocaine tried to advise his client to accept a plea agreement, so that client cannot appeal on the basis of ineffective assistance of counsel, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday.
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Lawyer’s use of word ‘Negro’ prejudiced client, but doesn't get PCR

December 1, 2016
Dave Stafford
A defense attorney who has since been disbarred prejudiced his absent client when he referred to him as a “Negro” before potential jurors, a judge wrote, but the offending word wasn’t enough for the Court of Appeals to grant post-conviction relief.
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COA finds that defendant did not prove counsel error

September 21, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals will not reverse a decision to deny a man’s petition for post-conviction relief after he was convicted of three counts of felony robbery, despite his argument that the third charge of felony robbery was added against him in an untimely manner.
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7th Circuit upholds foster father’s child molestation conviction

September 13, 2016
Olivia Covington
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld a foster father’s conviction of molesting his former foster daughter after the foster father claimed that his counsel at trial was ineffective in a manner that was prejudicial.
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Man’s ineffective assistance of counsel claim fails in 7th Circuit

August 30, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
The habeas corpus petition by a prisoner at the Miami Correctional Facility was correctly denied in federal court, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals held Monday. The man argued his appellate counsel provided ineffective assistance of counsel regarding his habitual offender adjudication.
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Man’s ineffective assistance of counsel claim fails

July 22, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals rejected a man’s assertion that he received ineffective assistance of counsel because his attorney didn’t object to the validity of the order placing him on probation.
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Murder defendant’s trial attorney ineffective, COA rules

June 23, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed and remanded the denial of a man’s post-conviction relief petition, finding his trial counsel was ineffective and his petition was not barred by laches.
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COA upholds denial of post-conviction relief petition

May 12, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld the denial of a man’s post-conviction relief petition after it found any ineffectiveness of counsel the man received did not affect the outcome of his case in his decision to plead guilty to Class A felony neglect of a dependent.
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7th Circuit affirms COA sentence in split decision

April 27, 2016
Scott Roberts
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in a split decision the Indiana Court of Appeals did not make any error in federal law when it upheld a man’s consecutive 40-year sentences for three convictions of child molestation.
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Court reduces man's sentence by 3 years

April 5, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals reduced a man’s aggregate sentence by three years after it found he was denied effective assistance of counsel when his counsel did not bring up a statutory limitation issue.
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Decision against trying to bifurcate did not prejudice jury

February 8, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
Refusing to second-guess trial strategy, the Indiana Court of Appeals found an East Chicago man did not meet his burden to prove he had ineffective counsel.
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7th Circuit: Plea agreement forecloses sentence appeal

February 5, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
A man who pleaded guilty in federal court to drug charges is unable to challenge his sentence on appeal based on this plea agreement, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday.
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Split COA finds attorney did not provide adequate counsel

December 29, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Two typewritten letters and handwritten notes between a now-deceased defense attorney and a former prosecutor have divided the Indiana Court of Appeals over whether a plea agreement had actually been negotiated.
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SCOTUS says lawyer’s brief absence doesn’t merit retrial

March 30, 2015
 Associated Press
The  Supreme Court of the United States says a Michigan man convicted of murder and armed robbery does not deserve a new trial even though his lawyer was absent for 10 minutes during the original trial.
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No new trial for Indiana woman convicted in deadly crash

March 5, 2015
 Associated Press
An Indianapolis woman convicted of killing six children and a man in a wrong-way, head-on collision along a state highway will not get a new trial, a judge has ruled.
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Judges rule counsel was not deficient, drug conviction stands

February 25, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a man’s conviction of Class D felony possession of marijuana in excess of 30 grams after finding that the claims he wanted his attorney to raise at trial would not have prevailed.
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COA reverses convictions based on ineffective appellate counsel

December 8, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a man’s convictions of Class A felony child molesting and Class B felony sexual misconduct with a minor based on his sexual advances toward his stepdaughter when she was in junior high and high school. The judges acknowledged as a result of their decision, the stepfather won’t face any legal consequences for those actions, but the state had a duty to present sufficient evidence to support those convictions.
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  1. Unlike the federal judge who refused to protect me, the Virginia State Bar gave me a hearing. After the hearing, the Virginia State Bar refused to discipline me. VSB said that attacking me with the court ADA coordinator had, " all the grace and charm of a drive-by shooting." One does wonder why the VSB was able to have a hearing and come to that conclusion, but the federal judge in Indiana slammed the door of the courthouse in my face.

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