Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Williams v. Jones case brief

Williams v. Jones case brief summary
571 F.3d 1086 (2009)


CASE SYNOPSIS
Petitioner inmate challenged the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma's denial of his habeas corpus petition brought pursuant to 28 U.S.C.S. § 2254. The only issue before the appellate court was whether, having determined that the inmate received ineffective assistance of counsel in rejecting a plea offer, the state court of criminal appeals fashioned a constitutionally permissible remedy.

ISSUE
The appellate court had to decide whether the remedy imposed for the Sixth Amendmentviolation identified by the state court of criminal appeals was constitutionally adequate.

DISCUSSION
  • The inmate established deficient performance and prejudice caused by counsel's advice concerning the plea agreement, advising the inmate that he would be committing perjury by accepting the plea offer and insisting that the inmate proceed to trial or find new counsel if he wanted to accept it. 
  • The evidence suggested a reasonable probability that the plea offer would have been accepted but for defense counsel's ineffective assistance. 
  • Therefore, the appellate court found that even under a deferential standard of review, the state court of criminal appeals imposition of a modified sentence as a remedy for the constitutional violation was objectively unreasonable under 28 U.S.C.S. § 2254. 
  • Recognizing the discretion to resolve the issue as law and justice required, the appellate court remanded the case with instructions to the district court to entertain briefing and impose a remedy that came as close as possible to remedying the constitutional violation, and was not limited by state law.
CONCLUSION
The judgment of the district court was reversed and remanded. On remand, the district court was instructed to impose a remedy that came as close as possible to remedying the constitutional violation, and was not limited by state law.



Recommended Supplements for Criminal Procedure Criminal Procedure: Examples & Explanations, Sixth Edition
Emanuel Law Outline: Criminal Procedure

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