Criminal Appeals

"It's just halftime, there's a lot of game left to play." - Attorney Joe Bodiford

Just because you were convicted does not mean that your case is over. If you are not satisfied with the outcome of your trial, it is your right to appeal the case. Even when there is no longer the possibility of an appeal, you still may have options for post-conviction relief.

Not all criminal attorneys handle appeals work. At Bodiford Law, P.A., our founding attorney Joe Bodiford has handled countless issues on appeal, from sufficiency of the evidence, to sentencing issues, to suppression issues, and highly technical jury instruction issues.

The Appeals Process

After a plea or a trial, the case is usually not over. An appeal asks a higher court (in Florida, the District Court of Appeal or Florida Supreme Court) to look at the case to determine if any errors were made. Errors can come from the trial court's rulings on evidence, jury instructions, and rulings on pretrial motions.

An appeal does not reweigh the evidence: by law, an appellate court cannot substitute its judgment for that of a jury. Thus, an appellate attorney has to find other creative ways to get a reversal in a criminal case. In most cases, an appeal must be taken in order to preserve other post-conviction issues in state and federal courts.

How We Handle Appeals

At Bodiford Law, we have handled many, many criminal appeals. We have successfully litigated appeals from the lowest to the highest courts in Florida, including the Florida Supreme Court, as well as the 11th Federal Circuit Court of Appeals. Here is how we approach appeals for our clients.

  • We start by collecting "the record," including everything that is in the trial court file, as well as transcripts of any hearings and trials.
  • We check to see if the sentence was properly imposed. If not, we correct any of those issues by filing a motion in the trial court. This is not a motion for resentencing but simply a procedure to correct any errors in the pronouncement of the sentence, such as entry of costs that are not appropriate or exceeding a maximum sentence.
  • We then delve in to the meat of the appeal. We look at the pretrial and trial proceedings to see what errors were committed. Among other things, we look for objections that were overruled (and the state allowed to continue with an objectionable line of questions), motions that were denied, and the denial of requests for jury instructions that would have been favorable to the defendant.

Consult An Experienced Appeals Lawyer About Your Case

Remember, a conviction is not the end. Learn about possibilities for appeal or post-conviction relief at a free consultation with board-certified criminal trial attorney Joe Bodiford. Call Bodiford Law, P.A., at 850-222-4529 (for existing clients) and 850-583-7381 (for new clients) or contact us online. Based in Tallahassee, we represent clients throughout Leon County and across the state of Florida.