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Brandon M.
Brandon M., Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 12573
Experience:  Attorney experienced in numerous areas of law.
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my brother is in jail in washington for an assault. he wants

Customer Question

my brother is in jail in washington for an assault. he wants to go 'pro se'. he has asked me to find anything on 'reduction of bail' or/and 'review of order in pre-trial release' or/and 'motion to dismiss for lack of evidence'. PLEASE HELP, I KNOW NOTHING ABOUT HOW TO HELP HIM
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Brandon M. replied 3 years ago.

Brandon M. :

Hello there.

JACUSTOMER-e71jb62o- :

did you read my inquiry?

Brandon M. :

Yes. Thank you for your question. I understand that your brother is in jail in Washington. Are you in Washington as well?

JACUSTOMER-e71jb62o- :

no. I am in oklahoma which makes my problem of helping him that much more difficult.

Brandon M. :

It does. I can answer any specific questions that you may have, but I need to be straightforward with you and tell you that you can expect to be of absolutely no assistance to him whatsoever. The resources that he will need to represent himself could be found in a Washington state law library. I don't know why he intends to represent himself, but doing so is a mistake 99.99% of the time.

Brandon M. :

Even if a defendant has a court-appointed attorney that was incompetent, at least the defendant may have the option of appealing on the grounds of ineffective assistance of counsel. If you represent yourself, you dig your own grave.

Brandon M. :

Metaphorically speaking, of course.

Brandon M. :

So I'm glad to answer any additional specific question that you may have, but this conversation is going to end with me telling you that your brother needs an attorney representing him whether he knows it or not, and anyone helping him is going to want access to a Washington state law library.

JACUSTOMER-e71jb62o- :

he had a court appointed atty. he fired them for pressing him to plead guillty. So I hired an attorney for him. that attorney lied to him twice. So he is now going pro-se. The attorney is not objecting. Once he goes pro-se the attorney will pay me back my 9500. retainer. then I am hiring a better attorney . I can not hire another atty until I get my $ back.

Brandon M. :

It's completely unacceptable for an attorney to lie to his/her client. It is actually cause for discipline under Washington's rules of professional conduct. It can lead to suspension of the attorney's license to practice law, or even disbarrment.

Brandon M. :

If you believe that your brother's attorney has lied to your brother in a material way, you can report any misconduct through the following link:

Brandon M. :

http://www.wsba.org/Licensing%20and%20Lawyer%20Conduct/Discipline/File%20a%20Complaint%20Against%20a%20Lawyer

JACUSTOMER-e71jb62o- :

My brother is trying to go Pro-se partly to interview witnesses and partly to have access to a law library. I know it is illegal for attorney to lie but in the meantime my brother is still in jail and awaiting the judge to withdraw the attorney

Brandon M. :

As for the first attorney, I can't say whether the advice to plead guilty was good or bad in your brother's case, but I can tell you that it is sometimes in the client's best interests to plead guilty even if he doesn't want to do so. But pleading guilty is ultimately the client's decision alone; there is never an obligation to plead guilty. Every defendant has the right to take their matter to trial and force the state to prove their case. If your brother has an attorney telling him to plead guilty, he has the right to say "no", and the attorney is obligated to zealously advocate for him even if the decision is contrary to the attorney's recommendation.

JACUSTOMER-e71jb62o- :

He wants to have me look up 1, Memoranda in support of a motion. to try and file a motion with the court. 2. Washington State Format (to file a motion) 3. Any case law concerning Reduction of Bail 4. Case law , on Review of order on Pre-trial release. He is innocent and was actually the victim of a drugged out man with lots of witnessess. Even the discovery in the plea agreement offer showed that the man didn't know what happened. He was on drugs and assaulted my brother twice before my brother defended himself and a third time after my brother got him to stop attacking him the second time.

Brandon M. :

That work would take a few days for an attorney to perform. The typical person without formal legal training would not be able to competently execute those tasks.

JACUSTOMER-e71jb62o- :

How can I find out if something has been filed and is confirmed and on the docket in whatcom county Wa. ? The old atty was supposed to see the judge today and be withdrawn but nothing happened and the old atty would not return my phone call. Is that information available to the public in courthouses.?

Brandon M. :

It is. The information can be obtained in one of three ways. It is sometimes available through the court's local website. It can be obtained by physically going to the courthouse and viewing the case file, or the clerk of the court's criminal division can provide the information by phone.

JACUSTOMER-e71jb62o- :

so the old atty told my brother a bail reduction hearing was confirmed and on the docket 4 weeks ago . It wasn't and the atty didn't even show up on the supposed date. a week earlier the same thing happened. Is that a violation of ethics?

Brandon M. :

Rule 1.4 of the Washington Rules of Professional Conduct Provides as follows:

Brandon M. :

Rule 1.4 Communication

(a) A lawyer shall;

(1) promptly inform the client of any decision of circumstance with respect to which the client's informed consent, as defined in Rule 1.0(e), is required by these Rules;

(2) reasonably consult with the client about the means by which the client's objectives are to be accomplished;

(3) keep the client reasonably informed about the status of the matter;

(4) promptly comply with reasonable requests for information; and

(5) consult with the client about any relevant limitation on the lawyer's conduct when the lawyer knows that the client expects assistance not permitted by the Rules of Professional Conduct or other law.

(b) A lawyer shall explain a matter to the extent reasonably necessary to permit the client to make informed decisions regarding the representation.

Brandon M. :

Also, Rule 8.4(c) reads as follows:

Brandon M. :

Rule 8.4 Misconduct

It is professional misconduct for a lawyer to:

(c) engage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation;

JACUSTOMER-e71jb62o- :

that is not clear to me . IF HE SAYS SOMETHING IS CONFIRMED AND ON THE DOCKET TWICE AND IT ISN'T. Is that not a lie?

Brandon M. :

If he knows that it is not confirmed and on the docket but says it is anyway, then it's certainly a lie. Yes.

JACUSTOMER-e71jb62o- :

are you still there?

Expert:  Brandon M. replied 3 years ago.
Hi, you may have experienced a technical problem. Were you able to see my answer above? Did you have any other question?