An Alabama Stalking Case Unravels with Claims of Ineffective Counsel

In the world of legal battles a recent case decided by the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals, is a compelling example of the complexities of criminal law and the importance of timely legal action. This case involves charges of stalking and violation of a domestic-violence order, highlighting the nuances of criminal defense and effective legal representation.

The defendant found himself in a challenging position following his former wife’s acquisition of a protection-from-abuse order. Despite this order's clear terms against harassment and stalking, the defendant's subsequent actions led to serious charges. He was accused of placing tracking devices on Brandi's vehicle and persistently following her, which resulted in convictions for two counts of second-degree aggravated stalking and one count of violating a domestic-violence order.

After his conviction, the defendant sought a new trial, raising claims of ineffective assistance from his previous counsel. His arguments centered on the previous counsel’s failure to challenge his wife’s negative characterizations of him in court, neglect in making a crucial phone call recording accessible for the trial, and an alleged conflict of interest due to counsel representing the defendant’s landlord in an eviction case.

The trial court scheduled but ultimately denied the defendant’s motion for a new trial. The defendant then escalated his fight to the Court of Criminal Appeals. The court's decision was mixed. While it upheld his convictions and the sentence for the domestic-violence order violation, it reversed the sentences for the stalking convictions. The court emphasized the importance of timeliness, ruling that the defendant’s conflict-of-interest claim, raised after the 30-day window following sentencing, was ineligible for review, in line with the precedent in Lowery v. State.

The case was sent back to the trial court for a new sentencing hearing for the stalking convictions, ensuring they comply with the laws at the time of the offenses.

This case serves as a prime example of the legal system's intricacies and the vital role of effective legal counsel. It underscores the need for competent lawyers and timely action in legal matters. This case is a reminder of the dynamic nature of legal battles and the intricate balance between law and justice. In the world of law, every detail counts, and time is often the essence. Stay informed and proactive in legal matters, as illustrated by the case of John Michael Cosper.

If you are facing a criminal case, contact Ingram Law LLC or Joseph A. Ingram today. He has been representing people facing criminal charges in Alabama for more than 20 years. Contact us today at 205-335-2640.

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