May 2016

Subscribers to the Criminal Defense Resource Center’s online resources, found at, have access to more than 1,800 appellate pleadings filed by SADO Attorneys in the last five years.  The brief bank is updated regularly and is open to anyone who wants to subscribe to online access.  On our site, briefs are searchable by keyword, results can be organized by relevance or date, and the pleadings can be filtered by court of filing.  Below are some of the questions presented in briefs added to our brief bank in the last few weeks. For confidentiality purposes, names of clients and witnesses have been removed.

BB 271488:  Imposing a 20% late fee pursuant to MCL 600.4803(1) constitutes an impermissible means of enforcement that exposes criminal defendants who have had the assistance of appointed counsel to more severe collection practices than ordinary civil debtors.

BB 271778:  By statutory definition, a felonious assault is committed by a person who lacks the intent to do great bodily harm.  Because the trial court found that Defendant acted with the intent to do great bodily harm, and thus convicted him of assault with intent to do great bodily harm, it could not also convict him of felonious assault.

BB 271879:  The trial court violated appellant’s due process rights by refusing to suppress the results of appellant’s blood draw, where the police lacked probable cause to believe that appellant had been operating a motor vehicle and to obtain a search warrant.

BB 271879:  The trial court violated appellant’s due process rights by permitting a witness who viewed a surveillance video to describe the images, where the video had been erased by the time of trial, and the testimony amounted to subjective interpretation.

BB 272101:  Defendant was denied his state and federal constitutional right to a jury trial where the record fails to show that he voluntarily and knowingly waived his jury trial right after being fully advised of that right by the court.

BB 272319:  The trial judge reversibly erred in rejecting a plea agreement that called for a specific minimum sentence on the basis of a personal sentencing policy that the judge would never agree to a sentence that was a departure from the guidelines range.

BB 272429:  Where the prosecution failed to present evidence in its case-in-chief to support the felon-in-possession charge, counsel was ineffective for not moving for a directed verdict before putting on a defense case that supplied the missing evidence.

BB 272487:  Defendant’s conviction for operating a methamphetamine laboratory must be vacated because it rests on constitutionally insufficient evidence of critical elements of the charge, where there was no proof Defendant owned or controlled any chemical or laboratory equipment, and no proof Defendant had knowledge that items in the vehicle were or would be used to manufacture methamphetamine.

BB 272707:  The trial court erred by imposing economic penalties on defendant after defendant left the courtroom.

BB 272707:  Defendant is entitled to relief because the trial court did not have authority to order monetary obligations after his probation was violated; the order violates defendant’s constitutional rights to due process at sentencing, US Const, Ams V, XIV; Const 1963, Art 1, § 17 and Michigan statute and case law prohibiting same.

BB 272828:Defendant is entitled to plea withdrawal, because (a) the factual basis for his plea is inadequate to sustain his conviction; and (b) his plea was coerced, where (1) it was based on mis-advice about the consequences of going to trial; and (2) it was tendered in order to protect a family member.

BB 272826:  The defendant’s sentence is reversibly erroneous because the felony firearm cannot run consecutively to all counts as the judgment of sentence indicates, and credit must be applied to the non-predicate felonies; this error is in violation of Michigan law and defendant’s constitutional due process protections at sentencing, US Const, Ams V, XIV; Const 1963, Art 1, §§ 17, 20.

BB 272941:  The trial court violated appellant’s due process rights by permitting jurors to ask questions of witnesses during trial.