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Common Reasons for Criminal Appeals

By Hager & Schwartz, P.A.

November 13, 2018

The criminal justice system openly admits not every trial runs the way it should. Lawyers broke the rules and regulations of the prosecution of criminals so often we had to establish a concrete method to rectify prosecutorial mistakes: this method is called an appeal. While appeals can happen in a variety of cases, some causes of appeals are more common than others.

Common Reasons for Appeal

False Arrests

In some situations, the cause for appeal occurs before the accused is ever charged for a crime. Police officers must arrest someone lawfully, and if they arrest someone without a warrant or probable cause, the defense can appeal a subsequent conviction. Additionally, if the police misuse a search warrant that leads to an arrest, this may be grounds for an appeal.

Poor Jury Instructions

A jury must understand the charges at stake before they make any decisions about the accused’s guilt. A criminal charge has various aspects (the motive, the outcome of events, etc.,) and the jury must know each of these aspects before making a verdict. It is the judge’s job to inform the jury of the charges, ensuring that all members understand the various aspects of each crime. If the judge fails to give accurate or complete instructions, the defendant may appeal the verdict.

Juror Misconduct

The jury must be unbiased to make an accurate verdict in a criminal court case. Unfortunately, the jury is sometimes prone to jury misconduct.

Jury misconduct includes:

  • Jurors talking to each other about the case outside of the deliberation room;
  • Jurors interviewing witnesses; and
  • Jurors talking to the prosecution;

Jury misconduct is grounds for a criminal appeal, as the bias of the jury may have been swayed during this unlawful communication.

Hiring Experienced Counsel

All of these reasons for appeal only prove one thing; that hiring experienced legal representation is essential to your case. If you or a loved one have been accused of a crime, Hager & Schwartz, P.A. can help!

Call (305) 330-1360 now for an immediate consultation!