Wired Magazine published an article last week detailing how prosecutors misuse PowerPoint slide presentations to improperly influence a jury. Can lawyers who fight against prosecutor misconduct make a difference?
Unfair and inflammatory argument is common tactic used by prosecutors across the nation, even by prosecutors here in Columbus, Ohio. However, the use of unfair computer-generated visual aids in argument is a fairly new twist on the decades old tactic.
Prosecutor Misconduct Through The Use Of Improper Visual Advocacy
Over the past two years, on at least 10 occasions, appellate courts have reversed convictions in criminal cases due to prosecutor misconduct. These include improper argument presented by prosecutors in PowerPoint presentations. Much more often, however, appellate courts merely take note of the improper argument, but nevertheless uphold the convictions.
This is exactly the type of sneaky tactics used by prosecutors that require those accused of crimes in Columbus to fight against. Only criminal defense attorneys with the backbone to fight this kind of prosecutor misconduct can give their clients in Columbus the justice they deserve.
It’s also the kind of misconduct that lawyers who’ve worked for our firm have called out in the Howard, James, and Resh cases to gain new trials for our Ohio clients.
The Marshall Project has also written persuasively about why improper “visual advocacy” by prosecutors needs to be attacked at the trial court level by Columbus defense counsel. This type of improper “visual advocacy” occurs every day in Columbus courtrooms.
The best lawyers fight hard to prevent this kind of prosecutor misconduct. The mediocre ones don’t. It’s why anyone accused of criminal wrong doing in Columbus needs to retain the best criminal defense attorney he or she can find.
The only true way you can tell the difference between the best and the mediocre is to look at how well they’ve performed in the courtroom — how often do they win, and are they willing to share that record of wins with you.