Smith v. BrownAnnotate this Case
Pursuant to a plea agreement, Defendant pleaded guilty to felony murder and distribution of a Schedule I controlled substance. Defendant later filed a habeas corpus petition challenging the felony-murder conviction and sentence. In his petition, Defendant claimed that her trial counsel failed to give her reasonable advice on whether to plead guilty to felony murder. The circuit court dismissed the habeas petition without taking evidence ore tenus or by affidavit. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that, under the circumstances, the circuit court should have received additional evidence beyond the recorded matters to determine whether counsel’s representation fell below an objective standard of reasonableness.