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Counsel Not Ineffective For Not Using an Expert Witness

Ineffective assistance of counsel in the original trial or appeal is an often asserted claim when people convicted of crimes are attempting to gain retrials through the statutory post-conviction process. Because effective assistance of counsel in a criminal trial and direct appeal is a constitutional right, having ineffective counsel during those proceedings is a constitutional violation which can result in a new trial. In the recent Tennessee case of Hawkins v. State, M2012-02293-CCA-R3-PC (Tenn.Crim.App. 11-26-2013), the Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed a post-conviction court ruling rejecting the claim that counsel in an aggravated child abuse case was ineffective for not obtaining and using a medical expert to rebut the state's evidence that the victim suffered 'shaken baby syndrome.'

Counsel Not Ineffective For Not Using an Expert Witness

Ineffective assistance of counsel in the original trial or appeal is an often asserted claim when people convicted of crimes are attempting to gain retrials through the statutory post-conviction process. Because effective assistance of counsel in a criminal trial and direct appeal is a constitutional right, having ineffective counsel during those proceedings is a constitutional violation which can result in a new trial. In the recent Tennessee case of Hawkins v. State, M2012-02293-CCA-R3-PC (Tenn.Crim.App. 11-26-2013), the Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed a post-conviction court ruling rejecting the claim that counsel in an aggravated child abuse case was ineffective for not obtaining and using a medical expert to rebut the state's evidence that the victim suffered 'shaken baby syndrome.'

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