Kimberley L. McJunkins
Kaplan University Online
The first judge Robert L. McCrary, Jr. was the one who denied Gideon’s request for an attorney. Even though the judge was fair and helpful to Gideon, he didn’t want the same judge; because he felthe couldn’t get a fair trial with the same judge. However, Judge McCrary remained the same judge.
Gideon had no witnesses at the trial. He was his own witness. He was much unprepared.
State of Florida witnesses was the cab driver, and the owner of the poolroom and Mr. Cook.
Due to lack of witnesses and lack of legal knowledge Gideon lost his case and was sentenced to five years in the Florida Penitentiary.
While Gideon was in prison,he filed a petition with the United States Supreme Court to get them to let him have an attorney and another trial. This turned out to be a long process. As he wasn’t well educated his first appeal was rejected because he didn’t know how tofile the correct paper work.
The Supreme Court clerk sent him information back on how to do it correctly. Gideon doesn’t give up and makes sure that it is done right this time.
He felt he was denied due process because the courts didn’t appoint him an attorney during his trial. He said it violated the Fourteenth Amendment (however, note: the Fourteenth Amendment doesn’t guarantee an attorney but Gideon still argues that point).
Justice Hugo Black was the Supreme Court Justice who wrote the decision in Gideon’s case. Black’s arguments included the fact that the legal system is so complex that any defendant in a court case cannot be assured a fair trial without an attorney.
Justice James Marshall Harlan was the one who stated that Betts vs. Brady had served a purpose by indicating that defendants had the right to counsel past the capital cases, he also said that it provided for “special circumstances” rule and that the rule had come to the point of no longer being a reality.