PARRISH V. COM.
CRIMINAL: Ineffective assistance of counsel
Opinion by Noble; Abramson not sitting
Date Rendered: 9/18/2008
SC affirmed Jefferson Circuit Court’s denial of Defendant’s RCr 11.42 motion to vacate death sentence. SC rejected arguments that Defendant’s death sentence is unconstitutional and that he received ineffective assistance of counsel during his murder trial. Defendant was not mentally retarded, and therefore, not subject to imposition of the death penalty. The record reveals that Defendant’s lawyers conducted a reasonable investigation into his intellectual capacity and introduced sufficient evidence of that limited capacity in mitigation during the penalty phase to satisfy the Sixth Amendment’s requirement of reasonably effective counsel. Appellant was not entitled to an evidentiary hearing on this issue, and he is not entitled to relief from SC. The jury instructions were not erroneous, and therefore, cannot be the basis for an ineffective assistance of counsel challenge.
Digested by Scott C. Byrd