Client's 1999 Conviction Vacated
On December 21, 2016, Justice Ruth Pickholz, of the New York County Supreme Court, vacated the 1999 murder conviction of CAL client, DG, and a co-defendant. The judge’s decision rested on two separate grounds. Justice Pickholz held that the defendant had a right to know that a prosecution witness, who did not testify at trial, had perjured himself at the grand jury. Before trial, the New York County assistant district attorney had told the trial judge of the perjury but the judge, erroneously, granted the prosecution’s request to withhold the perjury from the defense. Justice Pickholz, however, refused CAL’s request to dismiss the murder charge – rejecting the argument that the perjury impaired the integrity of the grand jury. As a second basis for reversal, Justice Pickholz found trial defense counsel to be ineffective for failing to consult with and call a forensic medical expert to impeach the prosecution witnesses’ description of the shooting. Amanda Rolat and Abigail Everett represented our client.