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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 117369
Experience:  Experienced attorney: Family law, Estate Law, SS Law etc.
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I am scheduled sentencing hearing on May 13 in the

Customer Question

I am scheduled for a sentencing hearing on May 13 in the Kauai County Court. I have made a plea bargain (harassment) for the charge of Family abuse which occurred on October 25th. I plan to make a statement challenging the accusation, police report, Miranda, and other questionable items in my case. I have been using a public defender, who, from the beginning has shown no interest in my case. She has ignored my phone calls, emails, and generally treated me like a non-entity from the outset. I have been trying to get her to review my proposed statement which was sent to the probation officer to be included in the judge's package. She has ignored emails contains that statement, including this one from last week. What am I supposed to do at this late stage?
-----Original Message----- From: ******
Sent: Friday, May 01, 2015 3:10 PM
To: *****@******.***
Subject: Re: Police Report
I am resubmitting this request for assistance. I am unable to drive today due to my hip problem. All I need to know from the police report is what they have for "my statement". I don't remember it saying much about what I told them. I plan to challenge a number of items in it.
I am getting a little frustrated because you keep ignoring my telephone calls and emails. Have I done or said something that has upset you? I am at a loss to understand what is going on, and sincerely ***** ***** I have done something to offend you.
I realize that this is not an important case for you, but the accusation, arrest, court appearances, and other stress from it has caused me significant mental and physical grief. Yet I am still convinced that I did nothing wrong other than defend myself from a physical assault. If you ever read my statements you would understand that.
On May 1, 2015, at 11:48 AM, ***** wrote:
-----Original Message----- From: ******
Sent: Monday, April 27, 2015 1:48 PM
To: *****@******.*** ; *******
Subject: Police Report
I may need to review my police report again for my oral statement on May 13. I plan to challenge many of the statements in it. Have you ever read my submission to the probation officer? Have you heard any more from the prosecutor since I submitted my statement? If the judge is not satisfied with my request to drop charges and restore my record, I may go to Jury, unless you can get to the prosecutor and have them drop this thing and my record cleared. It has been six months, jail, banishment from my home, $$$ cost, 4 court appearances, hospitalization,much time spent writing statements, etc. there have been no incidents by me in that time. I have been punished enough because of a minor incident, because of an allegation and a highly speculative police report!
I was very sick, just out of the hospital, when I made the plea bargain. Since then I have had time to think. What I did was self-defense, no injury incurred, yet I have been subjected to much indignity based on an accusation. I would appreciate your advice on this. I would appreciate some further defense effort on this.
I need to get some X-rays for my hip operation and will be in Lihue on Friday. Don't know what the timing will be. How much notice do you need to pull it out of the files?
Thank you.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
Once you have made a plea bargain, it is now too late to challenge what you say you want to challenge because you have already entered a guilty plea and you are now just appearing for sentencing. If you want to challenge what you say you want to challenge and basically argue and fight the charges in court the sentencing hearing is not where you do so. You would have to file a motion to withdraw/vacate your guilty plea, at which time the plea deal would go away if the court allows you to vacate the plea and the original charges would be reinstated and trial would be set.
In trial, you can call witnesses and challenge all of the things you say you believe show you are not guilty of anything.
If your lawyer will not represent you, then you need to consider terminating your attorney and get another attorney who will stand up for you. However, if you go into the sentencing hearing trying to do what you are saying, the court will tell you that it is out of order and proceed with sentencing, so you need to file to vacate and take your chances going to trial on the original charges if you believe you can prove you are not guilty (but do not count on getting any plea deals again in this case).

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