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HOMICIDE

Homicide/Self-Defense: A family retained me on Friday after their son was arrested for shooting and killing a man.  My investigator and I went to the scene over the weekend, we interviewed witnesses, and we located the crucial defense witness who had already left town.  We obtained a tape recorded statement from that witness by Sunday night.  I got it to the prosecuting attorney after hours.  By the first court hearing on Monday morning, the prosecutor agreed it was a case of self-defense.  The court released the client.  No criminal charge was ever filed.

Homicide/Child Abuse: A new father retained me when his infant son was hospitalized in a coma.  The State believed the child had been shaken to cause brain injury.  The court restricted the parents' access to their child in the hospital.  We obtained visitation to permit the young parents to see and hold their baby, who soon died. A later autopsy revealed no evidence of abuse.  No charge was filed.

Attempted Homicide: A young mother tried to kill herself by driving her van into a freeway barrier. Fortunately her two young sons in the van were not seriously hurt. The State charged her with two counts of attempted murder. The client went quickly from the jail into a state hospital. A psychiatrist doing intake conferred with counsel. This immediate observation and consultation preserved evidence of the client's severe mental illness and led to an agreed disposition of not guilty by reason of insanity. The client was hospitalized and received mental health treatment. She was released to live with her family after a few years instead of being imprisoned for many years.

Homicide/Self-Defense: A teenage shot and killed his father as he walked in the door after work. The father had horrifically abused the client, his mother and brother for ten years. We presented witnesses of the years of abuse. Expert witnesses testified to the effect of prolonged abuse on his development and perceptions. They explained how "battered child syndrome" gave the client a heightened perception of when the abuser would attack, and why he reasonably feared for his life when he shot the man in self defense.  The jury was unable to reach a verdict. The State later resolved the case with a plea to manslaughter and credit for time served.

Homicide/Battered Women's Syndrome: My client was tried for killing her abusive boyfriend. The trial court gave an incorrect instruction on assault. Realizing its error, the court granted a new trial. The State appealed. The Court of Appeals agreed the instruction was incorrect and affirmed the grant of a new trial. State v. Corn, 95 Wn. App. 41, 975 P.2d 520 (1999).

Homicide/Self-Defense: My client was convicted at trial of second degree murder. The Supreme Court reversed his conviction because the court failed to give instructions on a lesser included offense based on self-defense. State v. Schaffer, 135 Wn.2d 355, 957 p.2d 214 (1998).

Aggravated First Degree Murder: My client was convicted of killing two people based on circumstantial evidence. On appeal, we challenged the State's procedure for obtaining a search warrant to search the client's home. The Court of Appeals held the search warrant was unconstitutional, reversed the convictions, and ordered a new trial without the evidence obtained with the warrant.

Pre-SRA Parolability Hearing: In 2001, I represented a client on a 1983 murder conviction seeking parole. We presented a plan the Board approved at his first parolability hearing.




Successes




Homicide
Rape
Child Sex Offenses
Child Abuse
Assault
CPS Investigations
Voyeurism
Domestic Violence
Robbery/Burglary/Kidnapping
Theft/Fraud/Shoplifting
Juvenile Sex Offenses
Arson
Threats to Kill
Identity Theft/Forgery
Criminal Trespass
Self-Defense
Defense of Property
Property Destruction
Violating Anti-Harassment Order
Federal Prosecutions





Practice Areas




Investigations
Preserve Evidence of Innocence
Challenge the Law
Address Client's Underlying Problems
Plea Negotiations
Pretrial Motions
Trials
Appeals & Post-Conviction Relief
Motions for New Trial
Appeals
Personal Restraint Petitions & Habeas Corpus
Clemency & Pardons
Parole
Other Representations
Victims & Witnesses
Non-Citizen Clients
"Hopeless" Cases




Law Offices of Lenell Nussbaum
2125 Western Ave., Suite 330 Seattle, WA 98121
Tel: (206) 728-0996 / email: lenell@nussbaumdefense.com
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