Former Prosecutor with over 23 years of experience

Appellate Case Results

Since its inception in 2000, the Law Offices of Jason T. Forman has achieved successful results for their clients. Of course, what is deemed a successful outcome depends on the facts and circumstances of each individual case, as well as the needs of each client. This page contains only a small sample of the successful results that Mr. Forman was able to achieve for his clients over the years. Results may not be typical and you may not have as beneficial as a result. Also, the date that the case result posted may not be the date that the case was resolved. Nevertheless, we will certainly do everything that we legally can do to achieve your desired goal!

51 Appellate Case Results

Petition Granted-Ineffective Appellate Counsel!

posted 2015 | A.N v. State

This is another example how the lawyer you choose can make all the difference, especially after another appellate attorney claimed that there were no errors on appeal!  Client was arrested for Grand theft > $100,000 for allegedly embezzling over a million dollars from her employer. She hired a criminal defense lawyer who charged her an exorbitant amount of money and she entered a no contest plea.  The client was sentenced to 10 years in prison. The client filed numerous motions, including a motion for post conviction relief filed under Florida Rule Criminal Procedure 3.850.  

The client alleged that her counsel rendered ineffective assistance of counsel.  Client also filed a motion for disqualification seeking to have the same judge removed from her case. Both motions were denied. The client appealed the denial of these motions, but they were denied.  The client reached out to a prominent and very expensive criminal defense lawyer, but due to the complexity of the matter, this attorney referred the client to Mr. Forman.

Client hired Mr. Forman to review the case to see what could be done.¬† The client wanted Mr. Forman to file a motion for rehearing since the appeal was denied.¬† Mr. Forman filed the motion, but as expected, it was denied. However, when Mr. Forman read the transcripts to file the motion for rehearing, he noticed what he believed to be an error that could help vacate the client’s sentence. The problem is that years prior, she had a public defender who filed an Anders brief, which tells the court that there are no errors on appeal.

Mr. Forman decided that he should file a petition for writ of habeas corpus alleging ineffective assistance of appellate counsel.¬† Mr. Forman identified an issue where a recent appellate decision applied to the client’s case. However, due to the prior Anders brief and the voluntary dismissal of the appeal, Mr. Forman had to get creative.¬† After discovering a small technical loophole, Mr. Forman filed the petition in the appellate court.

Despite the attorney general’s objection to the granting of the petition, the appellate court granted the petition and vacated the sentence. The client was worried because she was going back to be sentenced before the same judge. However, Mr. Forman remembered that a doctor who evaluated the client years prior and who was going to testify on her behalf, could not testify before that judge.¬† The judge had a standing recusal order against the doctor.

Mr. Forman filed a motion for disqualification, which was granted by the trial court.¬† The client’s case was assigned to another judge.¬† Mr. Forman was able to negotiate with the prosecutor and reduced her prison sentence by 40%.¬† The client was released 4 months after the new sentence was reached.¬† Needless to say, the client and her family were absolutely thrilled at the outcome.¬† The outcome of this case was only reached because of the creativity and legal knowledge of Mr. Forman!

Petition granted. New trial ordered for attempted murder charge!

posted 2015 | B.H. v. State

The client, along with two other boys, were arrested and charged with second degree murder and attempted second degree murder.  All three defendants were convicted and sentenced to prison. The client was sentenced to 30 years in prison. The client filed an appeal seeking a new trial based upon defective jury instructions.  The appellate court denied the appeal.  No motion for rehearing was filed.

However, the co-defendant, whose appeal was completed after the client’s appeal, did receive the benefit of the erroneous jury instruction.¬† His case is pending before the Florida Supreme Court.¬† Mr. Forman was hired by the Client’s family to handle the case even though the appellate process had already been exhausted.

Mr. Forman filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus in order to correct a manifest injustice in the appellate court.¬† Even though the attorney general’s office vigorously opposed the petition, the Fourth District Court of Appeals¬†granted the petition and ordered that¬† the client be given a new trial for the attempted second degree murder charges. This will allow the client to be re-sentenced or retried before another jury on the vacated charge.¬† The case is currently before the Florida Supreme Court.¬†

20 year prison sentence reduced to 12 years!

posted 2015 | State v. C.Y.

Client was charged with armed robbery in three different cases.¬† He entered an open plea to the court and was sentenced to 20 years in prison.¬† Client filed an appeal, but he was unsuccessful.¬† All other motions that he filed also failed.¬† The client’s mother hired Mr. Forman in order to see what could be done.¬† Instead of filing a 3.850 motion, Mr. Forman had an idea and decided to file a motion to mitigate the client’s sentence due to ineffective assistance of counsel – an unusual hybrid motion. ¬†¬†

Mr. Forman was able to locate a transcript from a scheduling hearing which showed that the trial court made a comment which encouraged the client to enter into an open plea, thereby giving the client the impression that the judge would be inclined to grant his motion for downward departure. Even though Mr. Forman presented this motion to the same judge who made this error, the trial court granted the motion and agreed to mitigate his 20 year sentence to only 12 years! Client and his mother were grateful.

Petition for writ of prohibition granted – all charges dismissed!

posted 2015 | L.M. v State

Client was arrested for three misdemeanor counts of contracting without a license, but the state ultimately increased the charge and filed it as a felony.¬† The client was not served with the capias until 3 years later.¬† Once he was served, trial counsel explained the situation to Mr. Forman, who suggested that trial counsel file a motion to dismiss based upon the statute of limitations.¬†¬† The trial court denied the motion.¬† Client hired Mr. Forman, who filed a petition for writ of prohibition arguing that the trial court had no jurisdiction to preside over the case.¬† The Fourth District Court of Appeal agreed and granted Mr. Forman’s petition!¬† All charges were dismissed.

Suppression of evidence in trafficking case upheld!

posted 2015 | State v. J.S.

Client was charged with Trafficking in GHB and possession of cocaine, which carried a 3 year minimum mandatory sentence.¬† Defense counsel filed a motion to suppress arguing that the stop of the client’s vehicle was unlawful.¬† The trial court agreed and suppressed all of the evidence.¬† The State appealed the decision of the trial court. Defense counsel, who won the motion, told Mr. Forman that he believed that the appellate court would reverse the order suppressing evidence and that he was surprised that he had won.

Defense counsel referred the client to Mr. Forman to handle the appeal.  The state filed its initial brief, arguing that the supporting caselaw required that the order be reversed.  After reviewing the record, Mr. Forman agreed that the trial court was required to deny the motion based on the caselaw.

However, Mr. Forman realized something that no one else noticed. He noticed that the state made a slightly different argument on appeal than the one presented by the prosecutor in the trial court.  Knowing that he would lose on the merits, Mr. Forman decided that the best strategy was to argue that the state should be prohibited from making this argument on appeal.

At oral argument, the appellate panel told the parties that on the merits, the state should win the appeal.¬† However, they listened to Mr. Forman’s argument and entered an order affirming the decision of the trial court! The trial court’s order was upheld, all evidence was excluded and the state was forced to drop all charges! This appeal was only won because Mr. Forman noticed this technicality, which many other lawyers would not have noticed.¬† Needless to say, the client was extremely thrilled!

Appellate court vacates arson plea and prison sentence!

posted 2015 | I.A. v. State

Client was arrested and charged with 1st degree arson with injuries, arson and insurance fraud.¬† He hired a well-known criminal defense attorney and was advised to enter a no contest plea.¬† Hesitantly, he entered an open plea which required that he be sent to prison.¬† The client hired another defense attorney who brought Mr. Forman into the case in order to submit a motion to withdraw plea in the trial court. Mr. Forman argued that the client’s open plea to all of the convictions violated double jeopardy.

The trial court denied the motion.¬† The client then hired Mr. Forman to handle the appeal and Mr. Forman won the appeal!¬† The Fourth District Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s denial of the client’s motion to withdraw plea and found that his plea did constitute a double jeopardy violation!¬† Client was very pleased, especially since he had immigration issues.

Appellate court reverses grand theft conviction!

posted 2015 | J.C. v. State

Client was arrested and charged with stealing $250,000 in a joint business venture.  He was represented by a known criminal defense attorney, but was convicted at trial.  The client was referred to Mr. Forman in order to handle the appeal.  Mr. Forman spoke to the trial lawyer, who informed Mr. Forman of the possible issues on appeal.

After carefully reviewing the record on appeal, Mr. Forman noticed a huge error which was undetected by the judge, prosecutor and defense counsel.¬† Mr. Forman noticed that defense counsel never requested to have the jury instructed with a good faith jury instruction which was counsel’s theory of defense.¬† Mr. Forman argued on appeal that defense counsel was ineffective on the face of the record – an argument that is rarely granted.

However, the Fourth District Court of Appeal agreed with Mr. Forman and vacated the conviction and sentence!  The appellate court found that trial counsel should have requested the jury instruction since it was based upon his defense at trial.  Client was thrilled Рthe State was not!

Conviction for aggravated child abuse reversed 8 years later!

posted 2015 | J.B. v. State

Client and her husband were arrested, charged and convicted of felony aggravated child abuse.¬† Although the husband was able to get his conviction reversed on appeal, our client’s conviction was repeatedly affirmed and left undisturbed by the appellate court.¬† The client recognized that she was getting pushed around by the legal system and was referred to Mr. Forman for help.

After filing a motion in circuit court, Mr. Forman brought the matter to the Fourth District Court of Appeal on a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus in order to correct a manifest injustice.  After filing all of the briefs, the appellate court agreed with Mr. Forman, reversed the conviction and sentence and ordered that all of the charges be forever dismissed!  Client was thrilled that her name was finally cleared!

Appellate court reverses violation of probation on appeal!

posted 2015| W.B. v. State

The client was arrested and charged with attempted trafficking in oxycodone.  Under the advice of his trial lawyer, he entered a plea and was sentenced to probation.  The client was doing well and was residing in a residential treatment program. However, he ultimately relapsed and admitted to using drugs.  The residential program had to inform his probation officer that the client tested dirty and he was violated. After he was violated, the client continued with treatment and desired treatment.

Nevertheless, the trial court found that the client violated his probation and he was sentenced to 3 years mandatory prison sentence. Mr. Forman was hired and argued on appeal that the client’s violation was not willful and substantial. The Fourth District Court of Appeal agreed and¬†reversed¬†and¬†vacated¬†his sentence!¬† The appellate court found that relapse is a part of rehabilitation and that the client, who wanted treatment and who actively participated, did not violate the terms of his probation.¬† This case was so important due to the frequency that this occurs in Circuit Court that Mr. Forman frequently gets phone calls from other lawyers!

Denial of motion to withdraw plea reversed on appeal!

posted 2015 | G.P. v. State (criminal appeal)

This is an example of how choosing an experienced criminal appellate attorney makes the difference between winning and losing. The client entered an open plea and was sentenced to 20 years in prison for violating his probation for sex offenses.  He was represented by a respected criminal trial attorney.  The client filed his own pro-se motion to withdraw his plea alleging that his plea to the violations were not voluntarily entered.  The trial court denied his motion and he filed an appeal.  He was represented by a public defender for the appeal.

The public defender, an experienced criminal appellate attorney, filed an Anders brief with the appellate court and moved to withdraw as attorney of record.¬† An Anders brief is filed to inform the court that the attorney reviewed the record on appeal and has determined that no errors occurred. The client’s family hired Mr. Forman, who informed them that he disagreed with the former lawyer.¬† Mr. Forman advised them that he believed that the trial court was wrong when it denied the client’s motion. Mr. Forman filed his own brief in the case and the Fourth District Court of Appeal agreed and reversed the denial of the motion to withdraw plea.¬† This is just another example of Mr. Forman finding an error that other lawyers overlook or simply are not familiar with criminal appellate law.

51 Appellate Case Results

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