Last month, Nenner Law Firm won an appeal for their client in a Northampton County, Pennsylvania case. Read about the details of this recent PCRA win for the criminal lawyer David Nenner.
Summary of the Case
The defendant was convicted of 25 criminal counts, including robbery and burglary. He was sentenced to an aggregate term of 336 to 888 months of prison time. The defendant filed a direct appeal, but the PA Superior Court affirmed the sentence.
Thereafter, defendant filed a pro se PCRA petition, i.e., filed a petition without the assistance of counsel. The defendant was then appointed PCRA counsel, whom the defendant wanted to dismiss. An evidentiary hearing was held as a result of the PCRA petition. Thereafter, the defendant filed a motion to dismiss PCRA counsel and requested to file a pro se PCRA amended petition based on appointed PCRA counsel’s ineffectiveness with respect to a Brady Violation. In other words, the defendant wanted to file an ineffective assistance of counsel (IAC) claim. See definitions of IAC & Brady Violation below.
On November 8, 2013, the PCRA court granted defendant’s motion to dismiss counsel but denied his request to file his own amended petition. Four days later on November 12, 2013, the PCRA court denied defendant’s original PCRA petition.
We were then retained to file defendant’s appeal from the PCRA Court’s Order of November 12, 2013. We were able to successfully argue that the PCRA court erred by not allowing our client to file an amended PCRA petition with respect to his appointed counsel’s ineffectiveness.
The Order of November 12, 2013 has been reversed, and our client may file an amended PCRA petition.
Ineffective Assistance of Counsel (IAC) – If defense attorney’s performance falls below an objective standard of reasonableness in his representation, the defendant may file a PCRA petition based on IAC. There are many ways a criminal defense lawyer may be ineffective throughout different stages of the case, such as plea bargaining, sentencing, cross examination of witnesses, etc.
Brady Violation – A Brady violation is one type of prosecutorial misconduct and occurs when prosecutors suppress or withhold favorable evidence from the defense. For instance, if the DA has a piece of evidence that shows the defendant may not be guilty of a crime, the evidence must be handed over to the defendant.
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David Nenner is an experienced criminal defense lawyer who has been representing residents of the Philadelphia area for 30 years. Please call our office for a free consultation.
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