MARQUIS JACKSON v. COMMISSIONER OF CORRECTION, SC 19360
Judicial District of Tolland
Habeas; Whether Counsel Rendered Ineffective Assistance with Regard to Cell Phone Evidence. On January 24, 1999, three masked men carried out an armed robbery of a New Haven delicatessen, fatally shooting a customer. The robbers stole cash and a cell phone. During an interview with the police, Steven Brown admitted his participation in the robbery and identified the petitioner and Vernon Horn as the other robbers. The petitioner and Horn were charged with several crimes, including felony murder, and they were tried jointly. The petitioner and Horn were both convicted, and the petitioner brought this habeas action, claiming that his trial counsel was ineffective in failing to present evidence concerning the post-robbery use of the stolen cell phone that the petitioner claimed would have undermined the state’s case against him. The habeas court rejected that claim and denied the habeas petition. The petitioner appealed, and the Appellate Court (149 Conn. App. 681) affirmed the judgment. The Supreme Court will now consider whether the Appellate Court correctly concluded that the habeas court properly determined that the petitioner’s trial counsel rendered effective assistance with regard to the cell phone evidence. The state claims that the petitioner abandoned the claim that his attorney rendered ineffective assistance in connection with the cell phone evidence in that he did not raise it before the Appellate Court.