Denial of Habeas Relief for Capital Murder Conviction & Denial of Motion to Suppress Evidence of Marijuana - U.S. Sixth Circuit
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Denial of Habeas Relief for Capital Murder Conviction & Denial of Motion to Suppress Evidence of Marijuana

US v. Montgomery, 09-3289, concerned a challenge to the district court's denial of defendant's motion to suppress evidence, in a prosecution of defendant for knowingly growing 100 or more marijuana plants.  In affirming, the court held that although, medication is one among many factors to consider in the inquiry, the sum of relevant circumstances supported the district court's credibility-based decision that defendant voluntarily consented to a search of his home.

 

Post v. Bradshaw, 03-4085, concerned a challenge to the district court's denial of defendant's motion for habeas relief from his capital murder conviction.  In affirming the denial, the court held that defendant's claim of ineffective assistance of counsel with regard to the no-contest plea does not survive de novo review because defendant refused to plead guilty, despite the state's offer of a life sentence in return for a guilty plea, and this strategy was professionally reasonable.  The court also held that defendant has waived his claim that counsel's ineffectiveness rendered his no contest plea involuntary.  Defendant's claim that his counsel was ineffective in the penalty phase of the proceedings because they placed victim impact evidence and other prejudicial information before the court via a presentence investigation report and a statement from the victim's son fails as a matter of law.  Further, even assuming that defendant's allegations that a defense team member leaked information are true, there was no prejudice, because he forfeited his right to confidentiality in the matter as a matter of state law when he disclosed the contents to a jailhouse informant.  Lastly, defendant's claim of a Brady violation fails as a matter of law, and defendant's claim that the trial court failed to hear evidence of a charged aggravator is without merit.

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