Court allows man who spent 7 years in prison to sue defense lawyer

PONTIAC (AP) -- An Oakland County man who served seven years in prison before his sexual assault conviction was overturned has cleared an important hurdle in a lawsuit against his attorney.

The Michigan Supreme Court said last Friday it won't intervene in a lower court's decision that allows Jackob Trakhtenberg to sue Deborah McKelvy for malpractice.

Trakhtenberg was convicted after a 53-minute trial during which McKelvy didn't ask for a jury or make an opening statement. He was released from prison in 2012 after the Supreme Court said McKelvy's work violated her client's constitutional rights to an adequate defense.

McKelvy has defended her handling of the case.

Trakhtenberg has denied the sexual abuse allegations. He won a civil lawsuit that was filed against him on behalf of the alleged victim.

Published: Tue, Apr 1, 2014