CASE RESULTS DEPEND UPON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH CASE AND DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR RESULT IN ANY FUTURE CASE.
Smallwood v. Commonwealth: Virginia Court of Appeals reversed defendant's convictions of first-degree murder and use of a firearm in the commission of murder.
Barrett v. Commonwealth: Virginia Court of Appeals reversed defendant's convictions of felony murder and child neglect.
Barrett v. Commonwealth, II: The Virginia Supreme Court upheld a conviction based on a new indictment brought following an appeal and reversal of earlier criminal charges against the defendant. The court reasoned that there was insufficient evidence of actual vindictiveness, nor did a presumption of vindictiveness apply, where the new indictment was brought based on a new examination of the evidence and the new charge concerned a different victim than the original charges.
Tweed v. Commonwealth: Virginia Court of Appeals reversed defendant's convictions of first-degree murder, attempted robbery, use of a firearm in the commission of murder, and use of a firearm in the commission of attempted robbery.
Commonwealth v. Tweed: With a narrow view of the case, the Virginia Supreme Court reversed the Court of Appeals' decision to grant a new trial based on newly discovered evidence, but the granting of a new sentencing hearing was affirmed.
Pulley v. Commonwealth: The Court of Appeals affirmed a manslaughter conviction and denial of a mistrial. Although a police officer testified that defendant invoked his right to counsel, the Commonwealth did not "use" the statement against him.
Olgers v. Commonwealth: Defendant's convictions were reversed because the trial court failed to instruct the jury on the defense of entrapment. The conflicting facts and circumstances in the case presented sufficient evidence to warrant the instruction.
McLean v. Commonwealth: The trial court erred in admitting evidence that the witness felt intimidated, but the Court of Appeals held that the error was harmless under the facts of this case. Also, the trial court did not abuse its discretion in admitting letters as prior consistent statements.Return to top of page
Green v. Young: Petitioner was granted habeas relief where a jury instruction clearly violated defendant's due process rights and trial counsel unreasonably failed to object. Second, absent pure speculation, one could not assume that the jury, when faced with the inconsistent directions, followed only the correct statement of law and ignored the incorrect statement. Thus, there was no proper verdict of guilty beyond a reasonable doubt for felony murder, and counsel's error deprived defendant of a fair trial for felony murder and the related firearm charge.
Monroe v. Angelone: Where the prosecution failed to disclose material exculpatory and impeachment evidence and there is a reasonable probability that petitioner would not have been convicted of first-degree murder had the habeas evidence been properly disclosed, the district court's award of habeas relief is affirmed. (David B. Hargett was author of the amicus brief for the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association).
Bowman v. Washington: The Virginia Supreme Court rules that upon finding that a habeas petitioner is entitled to a belated appeal, the trial court must dismiss the remaining claims without prejudice so that the petitioner may pursue the belated appeal.
Jerman v. Director Dept. of Corrections: The Virginia Supreme Court denied the habeas claims alleging ineffective counsel with regard to the petitioner's conviction for abduction and ruled that there was not a reasonable probability of a different outcome.Return to top of page