There are errors and failures in court cases from time to time, and you or your loved one could have had one of them. If you feel like this has happened, you can file a post-conviction appeal so you don’t let an error or another pitfall of the justice system fail you. If you’re unsure if it’s worth the effort, Candela Law Firm has three reasons why you should file a post-conviction criminal appeal in Tampa, FL.
There are a number of things that can occur in order for something to be ruled a legal error. Understand first that a legal error is not likely to be something as small as a minor typo by the stenographer. A legal error must be significant enough that the verdict, final judgment, or a denial of fundamental rights would be changed as a result. These errors could be something like granted or denied objections, denial of due process, or inaccurate charges. Most errors are minor and have no judicial effect. However, if you feel that there was an error, contact an appeals court attorney right away to learn more.
Juror misconduct is another way that a post-conviction criminal appeal can be won. Though it might not always be obvious from the final verdict, juror misconduct does happen and can be proven. There are two ways juror misconduct occurs. The first is jurors who lie. These lies can be any time the court is conducting the trial. From the examination during initial jury selection by the judge and/or legal counsel all the way through and after the completion of the trial. Lies from even a single juror can tip the final verdict one way or the other, which then results in an unfair trial.
Another form of juror misconduct is a failure of jurors to obey jury instructions. While jurors are instructed to use only the evidence and arguments presented in the courtroom during their decision, some jurors might read about the case in the newspaper or watch news stories. These outside sources can sway juror opinions and alter the outcome of the trial.
Ineffective Assistance of Counsel
The American criminal justice system relies on the principle that a defendant is innocent until proven guilty. This includes the efforts of your legal counsel. Ineffective legal counsel can fall under two claims: constructively ineffective counsel and conflict of interest.
Constructively ineffective counsel can be claimed in three instances. The first is if you were denied counsel at a critical stage of the trial or, according to the Cronic standard, your lawyer failed to put the prosecution’s case to the “crucible of meaningful adversarial testing.” This means your lawyer’s defense was not strong enough to test the case put forward by the prosecution. Finally, the circumstances of your trial made it such that your counsel couldn’t provide effective assistance. This could be the case if your representation was not assigned with ample time to prepare a case or your defense attorney lacks the experience necessary to fight your case.
Your lawyer might have a conflict of interest if they somehow benefit from a verdict going against their client. This can also be the case if your lawyer is representing a co-defendant who is on trial for the same crime.
Hire a Post-Conviction Criminal Appeals Attorney
Understand your rights as it pertains to post-conviction appeals. Hire a post-conviction appeal lawyer today to help file an appeal for you or a loved one. Anthony Candela and the team with Candela Law Firm have filed more than 100 appeals for clients, so you can be confident that we will get it done right.
If you are unsure about your ability to file an appeal or would like to learn more about post-conviction criminal appeals in Tampa, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. You can send us a message using our contact form and we’ll get back to you quickly.