Supreme Court reverses…for the State

28 10 2011

Upon an initial scan of the new decisions from the Arkansas Supreme Court I saw several reversals and assumed some great case law was made.  Unfortunately, those reversals were State appeals.

In State v. Cantrell, the reversal was of a circuit court’s grant of a new trial based upon ineffective assistance of counsel.  The Arkansas Supreme Court agreed with the State that it was improper to allow the defendant to invoke the attorney-client privilege in a Rule 37 hearing.  The rule is clear that once a defendant files a Rule 37 petition, the attorney is allowed to disclose everything he knows about the defendant and the underlying case.  So ultimately it is hard to disagree with this ruling.

In State v. Kindall, the circuit court judge simply failed to include his findings when he allowed the rape shield to be pierced.  The judge is required to make specific findings on what evidence will be allowed and the relevancy of the evidence.


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