Steve Justice Successfully Overturns Life Sentence of Dayton Resident

In 2009, a Dayton resident was convicted in federal court of violating federal drug trafficking laws.  He was subsequently sentenced to life in prison.  After all of his direct appeals were unsuccessful, Mr. Justice was appointed to represent him to pursue relief under section 2255 of the federal habeas corpus statute.  A full evidentiary hearing was held, and Mr. Justice argued that his client had not been provided effective assistance of counsel at the plea negotiation stage of his case. He asked the federal court to overturn his client’s life sentence and require the federal government to offer him the same plea deal offered prior to trial.  In 2020, Judge Walter Rice (S.D. Ohio) agreed with Mr. Justice that the federal inmate had not been provided with effective assistance of counsel at the plea negotiation stage, and he overturned the inmate’s life sentence and ordered the federal government to offer the plea agreement to him again.  Mr. Justice’s client accepted the plea offer, and he was recently released from prison, set free to pursue a new life with his daughter who stood by him patiently awaiting justice.

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