posted 2019 | State v. R.A. (Lake County)
Victory comes in many forms when handling a motion for post-conviction relief. Some clients want a full exoneration and a new trial, while others simply realize their case is unwinnable and want a sentence reduction. Mr. Forman always tries to create options for his clients so that they are not limited to one possible outcome. However, prosecutors will usually not agree to anything unless you have strong claims and invoke a fear that they will lose.
Here, the client had multiple burglary cases in Lake County. He was offered a 4 year global plea offer to resolve all of the cases, but based on the advice of his trial lawyer, he rejected the plea offer. He went to trial on one burglary case and was given 10 years in prison. He then subsequently took a 5 year plea offer on the remaining two cases.
Mr. Forman was hired and filed a motion for post-conviction alleging eight grounds of ineffective representation. After a lengthy period of time, the trial judge granted an evidentiary hearing for each ground. Because the client accepted the 5 year plea offers, the client was trying to lower the 10 year sentence to 5 years. Unfortunately, the prosecutor was the same tough prosecutor who handled the trial, but the judge was even tougher.
After many months of negotiations, the prosecutor agreed to reduce the client’s sentence by a few years if he agreed to drop the motion. The client talked to his family and decided to take the sure thing and reduce his sentence. The client was re-sentenced and eagerly waits his release.