Lexington Appeals Lawyer

A skilled Lexington appeals lawyer knows that no criminal trial is ever perfect or error-free. The state of South Carolina also understands this problem and provides those convicted of a crime the opportunity to file an appeal of that conviction. The right to appeal also applies to convictions for federal crimes.

There are certain errors that a qualified appeals attorney can argue in an appellate case, including the existence of legal errors in rulings the original trial judge may have made in presiding over the case, misconduct by the prosecutor (and law enforcement) who handled the case, or the ineffectiveness of the defense attorney representing the individual (for post-conviction relief appeals).

Examples of Trial Errors

In order to prepare an appeal, an attorney will carefully review all trial transcripts and evidence presented at the original trial.

There are sometimes obvious errors of the law that the lawyer can use in their argument—for example, if the original defense lawyer argued a motion to dismiss that the trial judge should have granted, or to suppress evidence that could have resulted in either a dismissal of charges or an acquittal that the trial judge allowed in at trial.

On the other hand, for a PCR appeal, an appeals lawyer may discover that the original defense attorney failed to file any of these motions, and can use these errors to show an ineffectiveness of defense counsel for an appeal and the PCR judge’s failure to grant the post-conviction relief of a new trial.

A Lexington appeals lawyer may also discover the prosecution withheld evidence during the trial or that new evidence had been uncovered since the trial and conviction.

Finally, examination of the trial evidence may reveal that the judge made errors regarding the rule of law, such as errors during jury selection or jury instructions, or admitting evidence that was highly prejudicial.

Appeals After Penalties Have Been Served

Even if a convicted person is in the process of serving or already served their court-imposed penalty, a Lexington appeals attorney may still be able to pursue an appeal due to the impact that conviction can have on a person’s future, including the possibility of future charges.

For example, if a person was convicted of drunk driving and it was their first offense, they now have that conviction on their record. If within the next 10 years they are charged with drunk driving again, it would be considered their second offense and could result in much harsher penalties. Had they successfully appealed the first conviction and won, however, the second arrest could be considered a first offense.

Another example might be an individual who was convicted of sexual assault. Anyone convicted of sexual assault in South Carolina is required to register on the South Carolina Sex Offender Registry. This requirement often has a significant impact on an individual’s ability to find a place to live or employment.

How a Lexington Appeals Attorney Can Help

If you were convicted of a crime, your criminal record can have a very negative effect on your future. A successful appeal can challenge your conviction and sentence. If you would like to speak with a professional Lexington appeals lawyer, call today to set up an appointment for a free case evaluation. An appeals attorney would be happy to discuss the details of your case.