The continuing battle over indigent defense attorneys fees in death penalty cases continues in the State of Florida as a new opinion has come out of the 1st District Court of Appeals, Fletcher v. Justice Administrative Commission (read the opinion here).
The Petition for Writ of Certiorari was granted and the case remanded to the trial court for reconsideration of the attorneys’ fees award with specific instructions given that "…If the trial court determines that an award greater than the statutory cap is justified, it should make the appropriate findings to support the award."
From the court:
While we are sensitive to the court’s budgetary concerns and the need to keep the courthouse doors open and thus preserve access to courts, these concerns must be balanced with the defendant’s Sixth Amendment right to appointed, conflict-free counsel. Gideon v. Wainwright, 372 U.S. 335 (1963); Johnson v. State, 78 So. 3d 1305 (Fla. 2012). …..
Rick A. Sichta and Susanne K. Sichta of Jacksonville appeared on behalf of the Petitioner in the case while Stuart L. Hartstone and Terence M. Lenamon of The Florida Capital Resource Center filed as friends of the court (Amicus Curiae).
We’ve placed Terry’s amicus brief together with its Appendix into the Terry Lenamon Online Library. Just click on the Library image in the left sidebar or click below to read those documents.