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Man’s molestation post-conviction bid fails on appeal

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A Morgan County man failed to convince a Court of Appeals panel that ineffective assistance of counsel and prosecutorial misconduct should entitle him to relief from a child molestation conviction.

In William Hinesley, III v. State of Indiana, 55A05-1302-PC-80, Hinesley appealed denial of post-conviction relief from the Class A felony conviction for which he was sentenced to an aggregate term of 25 years in prison. He claimed his counsel failed to object to hearsay and double-hearsay from police regarding what witnesses said.

But the panel noted that Hinesley’s defender testified to the post-conviction court that he didn’t object because he was pursuing a strategy of presenting the varying accounts of key witnesses to the alleged molestation, including Hinesley’s son.

“We cannot say that the post-conviction court erred when it concluded that defense counsel’s trial strategy was reasonable under the unique circumstances of this case,” Judge Terry Crone wrote for the panel that also ruled Hinesley had waived his claim of prosecutorial misconduct.

Hinesley also objected to his attorney’s failure to introduce the medical report from a physical examination of the victim taken the day after the molestation that Hinesley claimed would have helped his case. “We cannot say that the medical report has the same exculpatory value that Hinesley now assigns it such that the result of the trial would have been different had counsel introduced it,” Crone wrote.

The panel also rejected Hinesley’s argument that the cumulative impact of his counsel’s poor decisions prejudiced his case. Hinesley cannot demonstrate the trial would have been different absent the claimed errors, Crone wrote.

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  1. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  2. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

  3. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

  4. The sad thing is that no fish were thrown overboard The "greenhorn" who had never fished before those 5 days was interrogated for over 4 hours by 5 officers until his statement was illicited, "I don't want to go to prison....." The truth is that these fish were measured frozen off shore and thawed on shore. The FWC (state) officer did not know fish shrink, so the only reason that these fish could be bigger was a swap. There is no difference between a 19 1/2 fish or 19 3/4 fish, short fish is short fish, the ticket was written. In addition the FWC officer testified at trial, he does not measure fish in accordance with federal law. There was a document prepared by the FWC expert that said yes, fish shrink and if these had been measured correctly they averaged over 20 inches (offshore frozen). This was a smoke and mirror prosecution.

  5. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

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