“On Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments in a case with a surprise plot twist: The jurors were told that the accused was guilty of a triple murder — not by the prosecutor, but by the defense lawyer,” writes Nina Totenberg in their recent NPR article entitled “Do You Have The Right To Plead Not Guilty When Your Lawyer Disagrees?”
What Totenberg explains sparked our interest.
According to the article, "there is no way reasonably possible that you can listen to the evidence and not come’ to that conclusion, he said.”
“In an effort to avoid the death penalty, the defense lawyer refused to follow the instructions of his client, who contended he was innocent. The question before the justices is whether that violated the client's constitutional right to counsel,” explains Totenberg.
Well, this is getting interesting.
According to Totenberg, here’s what happened that led to this trial:
“In 2008 Robert McCoy's wife, Yolanda, took her infant daughter and fled Bossier, La. after her husband held her at knife point and threatened to kill her. She left her 17-year-old son with her parents in Bossier so he could finish high school and graduate, and went into protective custody in Dallas.”
The article goes into further detail, and we recommend you read the remainder – it’s a thought-provoking read.
But today, we want to take the insight from this Totenberg’s article in a different direction.
We’re going to discuss your right to plead “Not Guilty!” and what you need to put in place to help your efforts.
Keep reading; we’re going to share our thoughts below.