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I'm trying to help a LWOP

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Mica.21
Mica.21's picture
I'm trying to help a LWOP

I'm asking here for some help or advices regarding legal issues, which is a field I'm not familiar at all, plus I'm a foreigner so everything is very confusing to me.

I'm trying to help a pp who I've been writing for more than a year, we're really close and he's serving LWOP in California.
Now, I read his case and something didn't sound right to me as soon as I finished reading, he even told me that several evidences were not considered at trial, his public defender basically "screwed him up" so I suggested to find another lawyer and set up a strategy, unfortunately he is broke so he was there living life in prison hopeless, basically abandoned by his family, with an awful lawyer.

After talking about the fact that laws are changing, that if there's new evidence he could go to trial again and he was misrepresented he was having a lil bit of hope and so he asked me if I can google some pro bono lawyer or things like that, and I really need some help here to know where and what to Google in order to help him. What should I do in order to help him? My pp doesn't want money, just that I give him some contacts of people, organizations, lawyers, who could help him.
I've heard of the Innocence project but that's it, if anybody can help me figure things out it would be much appreciated. Thank you.

Liw from Scandinavia
Liw from Scandinavia's picture

I'm kind of in the same situation, trying to help my bf that's in for LWOP. It's all soooo confusing and I have no idea even where to start... :S (Like you I'm a foreginer, so I have no knowledge of the U.S's judicial system.)

Will keep an eye on this thread to see if someone has something wise to say... :)

Farfromhome
Farfromhome's picture

First thing I would do is find out if you can definitely use evidence that was known about - but not submitted - as new evidence at a retrial. 
Unfortunately the Public Defenders work for the State. So they're never really going to have their clients best interests at heart. 
I wish I could be of some help but I'm not sure of anyone that does pro bono work. I'm assuming pro se isn't an option for him? Always much more difficult to work pro se whilst incarcerated though. 

mjuran
mjuran's picture

I just saw this...my penpal helps inmates with their legal filings as a side business, and knows all about the law for things like this.  I'm planning on writing a self help guide for inmates to be able to legally advocate for themselves, learn how to write in the right "legal language" required, understand the applicable case law that governs their situation, changing rules on constitutionality of certain types of sentences, etc.  It's going to be a long project, if it even happens, but perhaps I can be a little bit of an information clearinghouse for people on the forum, if we make some kind of a space for that.  Just thinking out loud.  Because as much as I would love to pass on every case I hear of to my pen pal for him to give advice on, I'm afraid it could end up being too much to ask of him.  But I could pass along general questions, posted on the forum in a dedicated thread, and then post his answers when I get them...?

mjuran
mjuran's picture

Like a legal advice column.  Specifically targeted to the issues concerning the incarcerated.  ?

Liw from Scandinavia
Liw from Scandinavia's picture

I wrote it in another thread, but YEEEAH it's an amazing idea mjuran!!! :) That would be SO helpful for so many, I think. <3