It’s not unusual for a defendant to appeal a conviction after trial. Appellate counsel will scour the record for possible errors at the trial made by the judge, the prosecution, or the defense. A common claim on appeal is that the trial counsel for the defense was “ineffective;” in other words, the lawyer made mistakes that affected the outcome. The right to counsel is guaranteed by the Sixth Amendment and that right includes effective assistance of counsel. To prevail on appeal on the grounds of “ineffective assistance of counsel,” a defendant-appellant must establish that his lawyer’s performance was deficient and had it not been for his lawyer’s deficient performance, the result of the trial or sentencing would have been different. This claim has been made in numerous high profile cases. Kennedy nephew Michael Skakel was convicted in 2002 of bludgeoning…

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