Roberts v. StateAnnotate this Case
After a jury trial, Appellant was found guilty of the murder of the mother of his child. Appellant was sentenced to fifty-five years in prison and ordered to pay restitution. The Supreme Court affirmed the conviction. Appellant filed a pro se petition for post-conviction review, alleging that the trial court violated his right to a public trial. The post-conviction court denied the motion, concluding that Appellant’s Sixth Amendment right to a public trial was not violated. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) trial counsel did not provide ineffective assistance by agreeing to the process of conducting certain aspects of voir dire in chambers, and appellate counsel did not provide ineffective assistance by failing to raise Appellant’s Sixth Amendment claim on direct appeal; (2) the policy of prohibiting spectators from wearing certain types of apparel in the courthouse did not constitute a partial closure of the courtroom; (3) the trial court’s decision to prohibit members of the public from entering the courtroom during witness testimony did not constitute a partial closure; and (4) the post-conviction court properly found that the public was not excluded from the announcement of the verdict.