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.

Criminal Law Supreme Court Slip Opinion

by Booth, George


SC20335 - State v. Davis (Murder; right to counsel; whether the trial court properly denied the defendant's motions to dismiss his attorney; whether the defendant's right to counsel was violated when the trial court failed to inquire about an alleged conflict of interest between the defendant and his attorney; whether the trial court properly allowed three lay witnesses to testify that the defendant was the person on a surveillance videotape; "Following a jury trial, the defendant, Brock Davis, was convicted of one count of murder in violation of General Statutes ยง 53a-54a. The trial court, Gold, J., rendered judgment in accordance with the jury's verdict and sentenced the defendant to fifty years of imprisonment. On appeal, the defendant claims that the trial court violated his right to the effective assistance of counsel as guaranteed by the sixth amendment to the United States constitution by (1) denying his motions to dismiss defense counsel, Kirstin B. Coffin, without first adequately inquiring into certain bases for his motions, namely, that defense counsel did not diligently provide him with copies of the state's discovery materials or investigate information he had provided to her; that, during a meeting with her investigator and the defendant, she allowed her investigator to recommend that he plead guilty; and that she violated unspecified professional and ethical legal standards; and (2) failing to conduct any inquiry into defense counsel's alleged conflict of interest. We disagree that the trial court inadequately inquired into the bases for the defendant's motions to dismiss defense counsel. We agree, however, that the trial court improperly failed to inquire into defense counsel's alleged conflict of interest, and, accordingly, we remand the case to the trial court for further proceedings in accordance with this opinion.")