In a 2-1 decision, the 1st Court of Appeals has affirmed the conviction of Archie Doyle Martin Jr. for felony driving while intoxicated, overruling Martin’s contention that he received ineffective assistance from his trial counsel. But the dissenting justice wrote that the defense attorney “effectively became a second prosecutor in the case.”

A key factor in the Sept. 20 majority decision in Martin v. State is the lack of a record showing whether the actions of the defense counsel at trial, Houston solo Walter Boyd, were part of his trial strategy. As noted in the majority opinion, written by Justice Laura Carter Higley, Martin complained that the defense attorney, while questioning Martin on direct examination, commented that Martin’s life “is a dad-gum mess.”