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Two more former criminals with guns

swatgig

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I had two clients today for motions to vacate.

One walked into court in 1995 and pleaded guilty to OUI at arraignment with no lawyer. The other pleaded guilty in 1987 to receiving stolen property.

OUI guy went first. I argued to the judge that when he waived counsel that his waiver was not knowingly and voluntarily, since he did not know that by pleading guilty he was forfeiting Constitutional Rights, and therefore he should be afforded a new trial. The DA didn't object, and the conviction was vacated. The DA them moved to dismiss the charge since they could not possibly prosecute a 25 year old case. Dismissed. He had a LTC many years ago, but he lost it when the law changed in 98 (I think?) He's had an FID card ever since. Monday he'll apply for his LTC.

Second was a guy who's lawyer told him to plead guilty and pay a fine. He did. Then he learned that he couldn't get an LTC, so went the the FLRB for relief. He got the relief, but the FRB changed their mind and denied his renewal. I argued that his lawyer was ineffective for not pointing out to him that a guilty plea would forfeit Constitutional Rights, and that if he had been an immigrant and his lawyer failed to warn him of the immigration consequences of his plea, the conviction would almost certainly be vacated due to ineffective assistance of counsel. The DA didn't object, and the judge vacated the conviction. The DA moved to dismiss the charge, as they could not prove a 33 year old case, and the judge dismissed. It helped that he had a letter of reference from the chief who denied his LTC.

I had a good day.
 

cockpitbob

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You didn't just restore a right, you restored their reputations![thumbsup]

"Ever been convicted of a crime?"

"Nope."

(Well, I hope that's how these worked anyway.)
 

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You didn't just restore a right, you restored their reputations![thumbsup]

"Ever been convicted of a crime?"

"Nope."

(Well, I hope that's how these worked anyway.)
It really doesn't work that way in MA. Records of arrests, subsequent court actions, etc. exist forever as does "in house" records at every PD in the Commiewealth.
 

greencobra

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their not africans are they? i just can't see a caucasian catching a break in the legal system at this point in time.
 

AHM

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It really doesn't work that way in MA. Records of arrests, subsequent court actions, etc. exist forever as does "in house" records at every PD in the Commiewealth.
Wouldn't a prudent LO stick with finding a successful appellant unsuitable,
before playing word games about truthful answers to "were you ever convicted?".

The latter approach seems like spitting in the face of the judge
who vacated the conviction.
 

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Wouldn't a prudent LO stick with finding a successful appellant unsuitable,
before playing word games about truthful answers to "were you ever convicted?".

The latter approach seems like spitting in the face of the judge
who vacated the conviction.
That's not what the MA application asks!
 

AHM

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That's not what the MA application asks!
No contest. But there's a small spectrum of grammatically correct answers.
Some answers are always a stupid game.

But in the case of a vacated conviction, more than one might be legit.
(Unlike a dismissal or standing conviction).

Consider this: a vacated conviction ought to be better than a CWOF.
It's messier; yet more final.

(^ Written without looking for the Best Practice to use for a CWOF).
 
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I had two clients today for motions to vacate.

One walked into court in 1995 and pleaded guilty to OUI at arraignment with no lawyer. The other pleaded guilty in 1987 to receiving stolen property.
OUI guy went first...The conviction was vacated. ..Monday he'll apply for his LTC.

Second was a guy ...the judge vacated the conviction. .. the judge dismissed. It helped that he had a letter of reference from the chief who denied his LTC.
I had a good day.
Good On You - TWICE !
 

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No contest. But there's a small spectrum of grammatically correct answers.
Some answers are always a stupid game.

But in the case of a vacated conviction, more than one might be legit.
(Unlike a dismissal or standing conviction).

Consider this: a vacated conviction ought to be better than a CWOF.
It's messier; yet more final.

(^ Written without looking for the Best Practice to use for a CWOF).
IIRC the actual wording is something like "did you ever appear in court for a criminal issue other than a minor traffic violation". You must answer yes, even if the conviction was vacated and then it becomes a suitability issue rather than "perjuring yourself on the application" issue.
 
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This is so huge and remarkable work by attorney @swatig. I'm more than just a little bit surprised (my shocked face: [shocked]) that a state district court (and DA) would go along with the whole ineffectiveness of counsel story line. But good on 'em.

Still, what we need is the federal district court to rule that in cases like these, there was a civil rights violation because defendants were not properly advised by their attorneys that pleading guilty would strip a defendant of an enumerated right. That's a higher risk endeavor, but a favorable ruling would open the flood gates for similarly situated folks.
 

microwave900

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Amazing. Just like that, to go from convicted criminal to dismissed. That is excellent work. How on Earth does one obtain a letter of reference from the local police chief? That must have helped. Though of course only one of the two had it.
 

01906

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Great job! This state needs a few more good guys like you. Although it said that someone with a 20-year-old oui that could have been 18 at the time. Can't own a gun in this state.
 

Greschner 4

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I had two clients today for motions to vacate.

One walked into court in 1995 and pleaded guilty to OUI at arraignment with no lawyer. The other pleaded guilty in 1987 to receiving stolen property.

OUI guy went first. I argued to the judge that when he waived counsel that his waiver was not knowingly and voluntarily, since he did not know that by pleading guilty he was forfeiting Constitutional Rights, and therefore he should be afforded a new trial. The DA didn't object, and the conviction was vacated. The DA them moved to dismiss the charge since they could not possibly prosecute a 25 year old case. Dismissed. He had a LTC many years ago, but he lost it when the law changed in 98 (I think?) He's had an FID card ever since. Monday he'll apply for his LTC.

Second was a guy who's lawyer told him to plead guilty and pay a fine. He did. Then he learned that he couldn't get an LTC, so went the the FLRB for relief. He got the relief, but the FRB changed their mind and denied his renewal. I argued that his lawyer was ineffective for not pointing out to him that a guilty plea would forfeit Constitutional Rights, and that if he had been an immigrant and his lawyer failed to warn him of the immigration consequences of his plea, the conviction would almost certainly be vacated due to ineffective assistance of counsel. The DA didn't object, and the judge vacated the conviction. The DA moved to dismiss the charge, as they could not prove a 33 year old case, and the judge dismissed. It helped that he had a letter of reference from the chief who denied his LTC.

I had a good day.
As did your clients.
 
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