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c. Counsel

Scott Schmidt v. Brian Foster, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals No. 17-1727, 5/29/18, reversing Schmidt v. Pollard, No. 13-CV-1150 (E.D. Wis. Mar. 20, 2017); reversed en banc 12/20/18 A criminal defendant is entitled to counsel at all “critical stages” of the case. You probably think that a hearing, before a murder trial, that determines whether… Read More

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Question presented: Whether the rule established in Martinez v. Ryan, 132 S. Ct. 1309 (2012), and Trevino v. Thaler, 133 S. Ct. 1911 (2013), that ineffective state habeas counsel can be seen as cause to overcome the procedural default of a substantial ineffective assistance of trial counsel claim, also applies to procedurally defaulted, but substantial, ineffective… Read More

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William Hinesley, III, v. Wendy Knight, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals No. 15-2122, 2016 WL 4758437, 9/13/16 Hinesley’s trial lawyer didn’t object to the state’s presentation of the inculpatory out-of-court statements of the two principal witnesses against him because he wanted all of the witnesses’ statements admitted to show how they had changed their stories and… Read More

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Roy L. Ward v. Ron Neal, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals No. 16-1001, 8/26/16 Ward’s trial lawyers weren’t ineffective when they failed to adequately investigate and present readily available mitigating evidence and then, due to lack of preparation, instead presented evidence Ward was a dangerous psychopath. Ward was facing the death penalty for a brutal sexual… Read More

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Joseph J. Jordan v. Randall R. Hepp, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals No. 14-3613, 2016 WL 4119862, 8/3/16 Jordan claims the Wisconsin courts unreasonably applied clearly established federal law when they held that he was not denied the right to represent himself and that his trial lawyer was not ineffective for failing to object to… Read More

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Glenn Patrick Bradford v. Richard Brown, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals No. 15-3706, 2016 WL 4136957, 8/4/16 In a state postconviction proceeding Bradford presented new evidence from an arson expert named Carpenter supporting Bradford’s claim that he couldn’t have set the fire that was the basis for his murder and arson conviction. After the state courts denied… Read More

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James R. Todd v. Kess Roberson, 7th Circuit Cout of Appeals Case No. 14-3430, 2016 WL 3568107, 7/1/16 Todd claims his trial lawyer was ineffective for inducing him to plead to a charge carrying a minimum of 6 years and a maximum of 60 years in exchange for the state capping its sentencing recommendation at 10… Read More

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Eric Blackmon v. Tarry Williams, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals No. 14-3059, 2016 WL 3007212, 5/24/16 Two eyewitnesses to the murder of Tony Cox were shown a photo array and live line-up, and both independently identified Eric Blackmon—a man they did not know—as one of two gunmen who shot and killed Cox. The judge at Blackmon’s bench… Read More

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