By: Daily Record Staff//May 4, 2014
By: Daily Record Staff//May 4, 2014//
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
Effective Assistance of Counsel
Court Appointed — Attorney Incapacity
United States v. Griffiths
Judges Cabranes, Lynch and Lohier
Background: The defendant appealed from a judgment of conviction on one count of making false statements to the government, one count of obstruction of justice and one count of mail fraud. The defendant argues that he was denied effective assistance of counsel when, after his attorney suffered two strokes following the close of evidence at trial, the district court appointed an attorney who had not witnessed the presentation of the evidence to deliver the defense summation.
Ruling: The Second Circuit affirmed. The court held that there is no per se violation of the Sixth Amendment right to be represented by one’s counsel of choice and to effective assistance of counsel after the defense counsel has become incapacitated.
Donald D. DuBoulay for the defendant-appellant; Justin Anderson and Carrie Cohen, assistant United States attorneys, for the appellee