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Illinois Personal Injury & Criminal Defense / Blog / Criminal Defense / Defendant Charged With Possession With Intent Successfully Appeals Conviction

Defendant Charged With Possession With Intent Successfully Appeals Conviction


The vast majority of criminal convictions are upheld on appeal. It can be very difficult for a defendant to successfully petition an appellate court to overturn a sentence. However, there are plenty of cases that are overturned.

In this case, the defendant was charged with possession with intent to deliver and possession of cocaine as well as a third count of possession of heroin after a search was performed during a traffic stop. The judge asked the defendant if he understood the charges and if there were any issues with his case. The defendant replied that he wanted to speak to the judge; the judge assumed the defendant had issues with his current attorney informing him to put his concerns in writing. The defendant replied that he could neither read nor write to which the judge replied that he should ask his attorney to file a petition on his behalf. The matter was related to conditions at the jail, but the defendant told the judge that he was having difficulty reaching his attorney. Numerous attempts to call went unanswered. The judge informed the defendant concerning what his attorney should be doing. The attorney stated she would address the matter with the correctional captain at the jail. Lastly, the defendant informed the judge that he was suffering from severe depression, was not getting his medication, and wanted to “take himself out”. The defendant’s attorney stated that she believed that the defendant “could not assist with his defense.”

Participation in your own defense

 In this case, the defendant and his attorney had a falling out and the defendant petitioned the court for new counsel. The trial court, after hearing that the defendant could not participate in his own defense, denied the motion when it was determined that he could not file the motion himself in writing. The defendant asked the court to go pro se and the appeals court determined that request was valid. The court essentially ruled that the defendant was not capable of representing himself because he could not read or write. The defendant told the court other inmates were helping him read and prepare his motion. The court ruled that because other inmates were not attorneys, the defendant was essentially not allowed to represent himself.

A second matter was brought before the appeals court concerning the search and seizure. According to the defendant’s attorney, the officer who conducted the search stopped traffic to use a K-9 to sniff out the vehicle based on the officer’s suspicion concerning the conduct of the defendant and the driver and the fact that the vehicle was rented.

Both of these matters were then remanded back to the trial court to review the issue of sentencing. The defendant’s conviction and sentence were both vacated.

Talk to an Illinois Criminal Defense Lawyer Today 

Patel Law, PC represents the interests of Illinois residents charged with serious crimes. Call our Champaign criminal defense lawyers today to schedule an appointment and we can begin preparing your defense immediately.



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