Over the years, the firm has had many victories, large and small. Here are some examples which made the news and some that should have:
In The News
State v. Edukuye
In State v. Edukuye, Ms. Taylor was able to convince the medical examiner to change the manner of death from homicide to natural causes and the murder charge and all other charges against Ms. Edukuye were dropped.
WSBTV.com Friday, Feb. 21, 2014 CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. — A former Clayton County personal care home owner said the justice system worked, despite facing a murder charge for more than a year. Esther Edukuye said prosecutors justified her faith in her adopted country when they dropped charges in connection with the death of Robert Rosenthal. He was a resident of the home she operated.
“I want to thank my family. I want to thank my lawyers, and finally, I say glory to the Lord almighty for his grace, for his mercy and for his love,” said Edukuye.
Defense attorneys turned over records they’d dug up which the medical examiner had not seen. The medical examiner then changed her opinion from homicide by neglect to natural causes. Edukuye’s defense attorneys said the new evidence suggested prescription drugs helped explain extensive bruising and other visible injuries Rosenthal suffered.
Rollins v. State
In Rollins v. State, the firm won a unanimous decision from the Georgia Supreme Court in the first case of its kind. A woman who had only been in trouble once in her life was facing immigration problems because of it. She had listened to her lawyer who told her that if she successfully completed her First Offender probation, she would have no conviction and the case would cause her no problems with immigration or with becoming a lawyer. She did everything she was supposed to and her case was discharged (dismissed) under the First Offender’s Act. When she applied to be a lawyer in Florida and filed for citizenship, she found out that immigration considers that a conviction and subjected her to deportation proceedings. We were able to vacate her plea and the District Attorney dismissed the charges, paving the way for her to become a citizen.
For press coverage please see:
High court overturns conviction based on lawyers advice
In White County Georgia, we represented one of six counselors charged with murder in the death of a juvenile at the outdoor therapeutic program where they worked. The firm was the lead counsel on the case and vigorously defended the charges and did our own investigation. Through our investigation and advocacy, we convinced the judge to dismiss all of the charges against our client and the others and the District Attorney even agreed to expunge (erase) the arrest from their records.
For the initial Atlanta Journal Constitution article, please see:
Six camp counselors charged with murder in restraining death
For the final Atlanta Journal Constitution article, please see:
North Georgia Judge Dismisses Charges in Restraint Death of Teenage Boy
This client is facing deportation to Egypt even though he has been in the US since he was 4 years old. We are still fighting hard to keep him here. Please see this article for the background on his case.
I am fortunate to sit as a magistrate judge in many cases which make the news. Below are a couple of examples of the type of cases I hear as a judge:
Noteworthy Cases Which Didn’t Make The News
State v. B.I.
The client was charged with over 30 counts including rape, aggravated child molestation and child pornography. Through our investigation we were able to prove that the allegations were created by the mother of the children (they were in the middle of a bitter divorce) and the therapist. The pictures referred to in the charges (normal childhood pictures involving almost no nudity) were actually taken by the mother of the children and through our forensic computer expert we were able to show this as well. After 2 ½ years of fighting the case, the judge agreed with us and dismissed the charges in the middle of the trial. He chastised the District Attorney for not investigating the case themselves and going forward with trial, knowing the allegations were false.
State v. G.O.
I originally declined to accept the case because another lawyer had already tried to challenge the conviction and the judge had denied his motion. The client convinced me to try for him, understanding that I felt we had little chance of success. He had two domestic violence convictions, either of which were deportable offenses. I was able to convince the solicitor and the judge to reconsider and obtained the relief the client needed.
DDS v. numerous clients
Many people are receiving letters that their driver’s licenses are being canceled due to having had a license in a another name years ago. I have been able to pursuade the investigators to not take out criminal charges (felony or misdemeanor) and to clear the licenses.
State v. L.M.
Client was taken into ICE custody a week after meeting with us, prior to retaining us. His family was out of state but was able to get me what I needed and we were able to get him relief in record time since he was already ordered deported. He was released the day after we got the order signed and all immigration proceedings were dropped.
State v. A.H and J.H.
Both brothers were arrested for DUI. The first brother was stopped at a roadblock and was arrested. He called his brother to come and get his car. His brother had been drinking prior to going to sleep. He was arrested when he arrived to get the car. I was able to get the charges reduced to Reckless Driving for both, saving their driver’s licenses and all of the consequences of having a DUI conviction on their record for the rest of their lives.
State v. S.A.
He was in ICE custody due to an old conviction for graffiti on a retaining wall when he was a teenager. When I investigated the case, I found that he had pled guilty when he was only 16 and the Court did not have jurisdiction over his case. I was able to convince the District Attorney and the Judge to vacate the conviction and dismiss the charges. He was released in time for the birth of his little girl.