Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Washington v. Lampert

No. 04-35381 (9-6-05). Petitioner agreed to a LWOP sentence in exchange for the state dropping the death penalty in a murder. He was sentenced accordingly and under a plea that had him waive his right to habeas. Of course he files one, alleging, among other claims, IAC. The 9th considers whether an IAC waiver is enforceable, and decides “no.” A defendant cannot waive an IAC claim because it goes to the heart of voluntariness and effectiveness of counsel. The other circuits have come out this way. Thus, this is a significant “win”. Alas, the win is chimerical because the 9th finds that there was no IAC


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