X

Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:On appeal from his conviction, Edward Martinez filed a brief on his own, in addition to the one filed by his court-appointed appellate attorney. In his brief, Martinez says that his counsel lied, omitted facts and failed to raise issues that should have been raised. He requested that his counsel withdraw or abate the appeal, amend the brief and then be denied the authority to represent Martinez is any petition for discretionary review that may need to be filed. Martinez also asked the trial court clerk to send him a copy of “my transcripts.” HOLDING:Appeal abated. The court observes that an indigent defendant has a right to an appointed appellate counsel, but he does not have a right to the appellate counsel of his choice. And, he cannot use his desire for self-representation or any friction between himself and appointed counsel as a means of manipulating or obstructing the orderly procedure of the court or interfering with the fair administration of justice. This case is different, however, the court concludes, as there are several indications that Martinez is not manipulating the system but is instead making an attempt to represent himself on appeal. Though the statements he makes in his brief are not clear and unequivocal, they can by interpreted as an effort to proceed pro se. Or, they could be viewed as an indication that the attorney/client relationship has deteriorated to such a degree that Martinez’s counsel can no longer effectively represent Martinez. The court directs the trial court to conduct a hearing into whether Martinez does indeed desire to prosecute his appeal, whether he has waived his right to appellate counsel, whether his decision to represent himself is competently and intelligently made and whether allowing him to proceed pro se would be in his best interest. The court also directs the trial court to file findings of fact and conclusions of law. OPINION:Quinn, J.; Quinn, Reavis and Campbell, JJ. CONCURRENCE:Campbell, J. Though the concurrence agrees with the majority’s decision, the author “continue[s] to be of the opinion that a Texas criminal defendant does not have a right or entitlement to represent himself on appeal.”

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Benefits of a Digital Membership:

  • Free access to 3 articles* every 30 days
  • Access to the entire ALM network of websites
  • Unlimited access to the ALM suite of newsletters
  • Build custom alerts on any search topic of your choosing
  • Search by a wide range of topics

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?

 
 

ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.