Law and Argument

Donna Hockman – Virginia State Habeas


Explanation: A writ of habeas corpus is used to bring a prisoner or other detainee before the court to determine if the person’s imprisonment or detention is lawful. A habeas petition proceeds as a civil action against the State agent (usually a warden) who holds the defendant in custody.  The document below is Donna’s state filing.

Donna’s State Habeas Filing

U.S. Supreme Court – Writ of Cert Rule 60 Motion (Filed 07-06-17)

Writ of Cert – Rule 60 Motion

The Brady Colloquy

Explanation: Ensuring prosecutors comply with their ethical and due process disclosure requirements.

The Brady Colloquy

UVA Symposium on Wrongful Convictions entitled, “Speaking of Injustice”

Jury Instructions (1st Phase)

Explanation: When a jury deliberates a person’s “guilt or innocence” their verdict must be unanimous.  Anything less than 12 people coming to the same conclusion will cause a “hung jury” and result in a mistrial leading to a retrial or dismissal of the charges.

Jury Instructions (1st Phase)

Jury Instructions (2nd Phase) 

Explanation: When a jury has reached a verdict, their next step is to determine “punishment”.  Can you imagine not knowing what the punishment will be after rendering a verdict?

Jury Instructions (2nd Phase)


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