Asked in Appeals / Appellate Law and Criminal Law for Indiana

Q: Received maximum sentence on 2 owi resulting in death on open plea to the prior felony. Need appeal answers

Wife plead open to judge on 2 owi resulting in death cases. She has no prior felonies. Only misdemeanors from when she was 18 years old. Every motion her lawyers filed was denied by judge. No depositions were done on any medical staff. Judge held her juvenile charges against her openly. He didn't sentence her to any substance abuse treatment. He addressed her very negatively before he ever made his decision multiple times on sentencing day. Only allowed 1 character witness on her behalf, while over 10 letters were read on the states behalf. This was a very high profile case in our area. He obviously let pressure from media, and victims families influence his decision. Her court appointed attorney admittedly knew her victims families. There was only 1 plea bargain offered from prosecution. Are these enough grounds to win an appeal for a lesser sentence? If it's denied by the state how do we get it to supreme Court?

1 Lawyer Answer
Paul Stanko
Paul Stanko
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Plymouth, IN
  • Licensed in Indiana

A: Sentences are rarely overturned, but when a defendant is maxxed out, there is no downside to appealing. Contact an experienced appellate attorney immediately, as a Notice of Appeal must be filed promptly. You mentioned that she had a court-appointed attorney. If she is still indigent, she can and should request a court-appointed appellate attorney.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.