Essay Right to Counsel

1094 Words Mar 18th, 2012 5 Pages
Right to Counsel
Lionel James
December12, 2011

Right to Counsel

Introduction: The primary source of the right to counsel is the Sixth Amendment. It states in all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to have the Assistance of Counsel for defence. In this article, the development of the right to council will be discussed as well as when the right to council attaches to criminal procedures. The right to self- representation and the role of attorneys as it applies to right to council will be discussed as well.

The development of the right to counsel:

The Supreme Court in 1932 began to define the right to counsel and years later it applied it to the Sixth Amendment right to
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When an arraignment is a simple formality where no important decision is made is not a Sixth Amendment violation. Otherwise, a defendant must be represented by an attorney.(Zalman,2008). In Coleman v.Alabama, the Supreme Court ruled that a preliminary examination is a critical stage requiring assistance of counsel. When it comes to plea bargaining, the Supreme Court made it clear that the assistance of counsel is as important as it is in a felony trial. When it comes to police investigations, a lawyer has no traditional role to play during an investigation, and any problems with evidence may be derived from cross –examination. Counsel is not required in investigative hearings, or when taking fingerprints, handwriting samples, or voice exemplars.(Zalman,2008). As for lineup identification, the Supreme Court held that a Sixth Amendment right to counsel applies to post indictment lineup identifications. In United States v.Ash (1973), the Supreme Court held that counsel was not required under the Sixth Amendment during a post indictment photographic display. The Supreme Court decided (6-3) in Faretta v. California (1975), that the Sixth Amendment established a right to self-representation and set down guidelines for pro se defense. The Sixth Amendment does not provide merely that a defense shall be made for the accused; it grants to the accused personally the right to make his defense. It is

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