Criminal Defense of Immigrants


§ 11.73 (B)

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(B)  Ineffective Assistance of Counsel for failure to investigate the mitigating facts of what will happen to the defendant’s poor innocent family when he is deported, and for failure to use those mitigating facts to attempt to persuade the court to give a shorter sentence.[430]


[430] Agan v. Singletary, 12 F.3d 1012 (11th Cir. 1994) (counsel spent only seven hours investigating the case, ignored a potentially fruitful lead that would have created substantial questions concerning the identity of the perpetrator, and failed to investigate defendant’s mental competence to enter the plea); Baxter v. Thomas, 45 F.3d 1501 (11th Cir. 1995), cert. denied, 516 U.S. 946 (1995) (failure to obtain school and hospital records which would have lead to evidence of psychiatric problems); Jackson v. Herring, 42 F.1350 (11th Cir. 1995), cert. denied, 515 U.S. 1189 (1995); Hill v. Lockhart, 28 F.3d 832 (8th Cir. 1994), cert. denied, 513 U.S. 1102 (1995); Glover v. United States, 531 U.S. 198, 205, 121 S.Ct. 696 (2001) (a reasonable probability defendant would have received a sentence even one day shorter in length is sufficient to establish prejudice from ineffective assistance of counsel at sentencing).  See also United States v. Leonti, 326 F.3d 1111 (9th Cir. Apr. 24, 2003) (ineffective assistance at sentencing when counsel failed effectively to assist defendant to cooperate).