High court makes clear the right to effective assistance of counsel

On Wednesday March 21, the United States Supreme Court released the decision in Lafler v Cooper, finding that habeas relief was warranted due to ineffective assistance of counsel during the plea bargaining stage of the proceedings. Lafler was argued by SADO Assistant Defender Valerie Newman on October 31, 2011, with Assistant Defender Jacqueline McCann serving as second chair.

The decisions in Lafler, and the related case of Missouri v Frye, are being hailed as revolutionary as when Gideon v. Wainwright provided indigents the right to counsel.

For additional materials, visit http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/lafler-v-cooper/.

Published: Tue, Mar 27, 2012

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