The mission of the Connecticut Judicial Branch is to serve the interests of justice and the public by resolving matters brought before it in a fair, timely, efficient and open manner.

Habeas Appellate Court Opinion

by Townsend, Karen


AC37032 - James v. Commissioner of Correction (Habeas; "On appeal, the petitioner claims that the court abused its discretion by denying his petition for certification to appeal and that the court improperly determined that his trial counsel did not provide ineffective assistance by failing to pursue the petitioner’s trial objective or to seek a jury instruction on parental discipline/justification. Having thoroughly reviewed the record, we conclude that the habeas court properly denied the petition for certification to appeal. Accordingly, we dismiss the appeal... The petitioner next claims that the habeas court improperly determined that the petitioner’s trial counsel did not render ineffective assistance by failing to seek a jury instruction on parental discipline/justification pursuant to General Statutes § 53a-18 (1) although the facts of the case supported it. In response, the respondent, the Commissioner of Correction, contends that defense counsels’ decision not to seek the instruction was reasonable trial strategy, and that, even if they should have requested the instruction, it is not reasonably probable that the result of the underlying criminal trial would have been different. We agree with the respondent that the petitioner failed to satisfy the prejudice prong of the Strickland test. ")