Etowah County Presiding Circuit Judge Wm. Allen Millican issued an order earlier this month permitting attorneys to use electronic filing for motions, documents, and orders in criminal cases. While most courts in the State of Alabama have been permitting this for some time, the Etowah County Circuit Court in July of 2011 ordered that electronic […]
What forms do you need to file a criminal appeal in Alabama? A Google search on this question will lead to a lot of appellate lawyer websites, but a list of which forms to file to start the appellate process is hard to find online. We are fixing that problem by providing information about the […]
The Alabama Rules of Criminal Procedure govern criminal court procedures in Alabama. Because we handle a significant number of criminal appeals, we decided to make the full text of the Alabama Rules of Criminal Procedure available on our website. These rules are often important in appellate court briefs in criminal cases, especially when it can […]
Alabama attorneys who want to use iPads and other technological advances in their law practices may be interested in reading my new article, Technology in Appellate Law Practice. The article appears in the 4th Quarter issue of The Guardian, the newsletter of the Alabama Criminal Defense Lawyers Association (ACDLA). The article is not currently available […]
As an Alabama appellate lawyer, I often encounter people who want to withdraw their guilty plea in a criminal case. These defendants often say they showed up to go to trial on their criminal charges, only to have their lawyer pressure them into taking a plea bargain at the last minute. After having a little […]
A Marshall County appellate case handled by our office recently demonstrated the importance of checking the statute of limitations on any felony charge in Alabama before accepting a plea bargain or pleading guilty. Normally I avoid getting into too many details of the specific appeals handled by our office, but some of the particular facts […]
An issue that comes up fairly often in probation revocation cases in Alabama is the use of hearsay evidence. Criminal defense lawyers often get confused about the role of hearsay in a probation revocation hearing because hearsay evidence is admissible. While hearsay is inadmissible in most settings, a judge has the discretion to listen to […]
When a cop lies in court, do trial judges and appellate courts let them get away with it? It appears that in many cases, the answer is yes. Unless it is absolutely proven that the cop was lying, trial judges usually put their rubber stamp on what the cop says. When the case goes up […]
The United States Supreme Court recently held that an attorney’s duty to provide effective assistance of counsel includes the responsibility of providing accurate advice about the immigration consequences of a guilty plea. Providing incorrect legal advice to an immigrant about the deportation consequences of a guilty plea to drug trafficking charges constitutes ineffective assistance of counsel, and can serve as grounds for setting aside a guilty plea. In Alabama, such a petition would be raised under Rule 32 of the Alabama Rules of Criminal Procedure, which provides Alabama’s method for asserting that a defendant received ineffective assistance of counsel.
In recent weeks, our office has been contacted more and more by people looking for information about filing a claim against their attorney under Rule 32 of the Alabama Rules of Criminal Procedure. Not to be confused with Rule 32 of the Alabama Rules of Judicial Administration which deals with child support, Rule 32 of the Alabama Rules of Criminal Procedure provides a method for defendants to challenge their conviction in a trial court. It is normally filed after a defendant has already lost his or her direct appeal of a conviction, though appealing a conviction is not mandatory before filing a Rule 32 petition in most cases.
We have posted several articles about Rule 32 petitions on this blog, but we have not previously posted a copy of Rule 32 itself. Since so many people seem to be looking for information about Rule 32 petitions, we thought it would be useful to place a copy of the rule itself on our website.
The following is a copy of Rule 32 in it’s entirety, including all of the subsections of the Rule and the committee comments issued concerning the Rule. The general form which the rules say a petition should follow is also included in an appendix to the rule. For more information about filing a Rule 32 petition in your own case, please call me at (800) 737-3702 Extension 1 or fill out the Contact form on our site to send me an email message online.