Williams v. State, No. 25950.

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
Writing for the CourtPer Curiam
Citation611 S.E.2d 232,363 S.C. 341
PartiesLuke A. WILLIAMS, III, Respondent, v. STATE of South Carolina, Petitioner.
Docket NumberNo. 25950.
Decision Date14 March 2005

Page 232

611 S.E.2d 232
363 S.C. 341
Luke A. WILLIAMS, III, Respondent,
v.
STATE of South Carolina, Petitioner.
No. 25950.
Supreme Court of South Carolina.
Submitted February 16, 2005.
Decided March 14, 2005.
Rehearing Denied April 20, 2005.

Attorney General Henry Dargan McMaster, Chief Deputy Attorney General John W. McIntosh, Assistant Deputy Attorney General Donald J. Zelenka, and Assistant Attorney General Derrick K. McFarland, all of Columbia, for Petitioner.

David I. Bruck and Robert Edward Lominack, both of Columbia, for Respondent.

PER CURIAM:


We granted certiorari to review a post-conviction relief (PCR) order granting respondent a new capital sentencing proceeding, finding his trial counsel was ineffective in failing to request a "plain and ordinary"

Page 233

meaning jury charge.1 We find that counsel's performance was deficient, but that there is no evidence of resulting prejudice. We therefore reverse the PCR order.

FACTS

Respondent was convicted of murdering his wife and his son and received two death sentences. His direct appeal was affirmed. State v. Williams, 321 S.C. 327, 468 S.E.2d 626 (1996). At the PCR hearing, trial counsel acknowledged that there was no strategic or tactical reason why he failed to request a "plain meaning" charge. The PCR judge granted relief, and the State sought a writ of certiorari to review that decision.

ISSUE

Whether there is any evidence in the record to support the PCR judge's finding that respondent received ineffective assistance of counsel in the sentencing phase of his capital trial?

ANALYSIS

A PCR applicant claiming trial counsel rendered ineffective assistance must demonstrate that (1) counsel's representation fell below an objective standard of reasonableness and (2) but for counsel's error, there is a reasonable probability that the outcome of the proceeding would have been different. Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668, 104 S.Ct. 2052, 80 L.Ed.2d 674 (1984); Sellers v. State, 362 S.C. 182, 607 S.E.2d 82 (2005). In other words, the applicant must establish both error and prejudice. Id. On appellate review, this Court will uphold the PCR judge's findings of fact and conclusions of law if there is any evidence of probative value in the record to support them. Id.

The PCR judge found that trial counsel's testimony established the error prong of the ineffective assistance test. We agree. He found resulting prejudice from the failure to give "the plain meaning" charge because:

1) respondent had no prior criminal record;

2) respondent had been out on bond prior to the trial and remained...

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16 practice notes
  • Smalls v. State, Appellate Case No. 2016-001079
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • February 7, 2018
    ...was deficient, an applicant must show "counsel's representation fell below an objective standard of reasonableness." Williams v. State , 363 S.C. 341, 343, 611 S.E.2d 232, 233 (2005) (citing Strickland v. Washington , 466 U.S. 668, 688, 104 S.Ct. 2052, 2064, 80 L.E.2d 674, 693 (1984) ). The......
  • Stone v. State, Appellate Case No. 2013-001968
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • March 29, 2017
    ...for counsel's error, there is a reasonable probability that the outcome of the proceeding would have been different." Williams v. State , 363 S.C. 341, 343, 611 S.E.2d 232, 233 (2005) (citing Strickland , 466 U.S. at 687, 104 S.Ct. at 2064, 80 L.Ed.2d at 693 ).III. Victim Impact EvidenceSto......
  • Stone v. State, Appellate Case No. 2013-001968
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • February 8, 2017
    ...for counsel's error, there is a reasonable probability that the outcome of the proceeding would have been different." Williams v. State, 363 S.C. 341, 343, 611 S.E.2d 232, 233 (2005) (citing Strickland, 466 U.S. at 687, 104 S. Ct. at 2064, 80 L. E. 2d at 693). III. Victim Impact EvidenceSto......
  • Winkler v. State, Appellate Case No. 2014-000904
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • November 23, 2016
    ...for counsel's error, there is a reasonable probability that the outcome of the proceeding would have been different." Williams v. State , 363 S.C. 341, 343, 611 S.E.2d 232, 233 (2005) (citing Strickland , 466 U.S. at 687, 104 S.Ct. at 2064, 80 L.Ed.2d at 693 ). Winkler contends his counsel'......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
16 cases
  • Smalls v. State, Appellate Case No. 2016-001079
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • February 7, 2018
    ...was deficient, an applicant must show "counsel's representation fell below an objective standard of reasonableness." Williams v. State , 363 S.C. 341, 343, 611 S.E.2d 232, 233 (2005) (citing Strickland v. Washington , 466 U.S. 668, 688, 104 S.Ct. 2052, 2064, 80 L.E.2d 674, 693 (1984) ). The......
  • Stone v. State, Appellate Case No. 2013-001968
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • March 29, 2017
    ...for counsel's error, there is a reasonable probability that the outcome of the proceeding would have been different." Williams v. State , 363 S.C. 341, 343, 611 S.E.2d 232, 233 (2005) (citing Strickland , 466 U.S. at 687, 104 S.Ct. at 2064, 80 L.Ed.2d at 693 ).III. Victim Impact EvidenceSto......
  • Stone v. State, Appellate Case No. 2013-001968
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • February 8, 2017
    ...for counsel's error, there is a reasonable probability that the outcome of the proceeding would have been different." Williams v. State, 363 S.C. 341, 343, 611 S.E.2d 232, 233 (2005) (citing Strickland, 466 U.S. at 687, 104 S. Ct. at 2064, 80 L. E. 2d at 693). III. Victim Impact EvidenceSto......
  • Winkler v. State, Appellate Case No. 2014-000904
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
    • November 23, 2016
    ...for counsel's error, there is a reasonable probability that the outcome of the proceeding would have been different." Williams v. State , 363 S.C. 341, 343, 611 S.E.2d 232, 233 (2005) (citing Strickland , 466 U.S. at 687, 104 S.Ct. at 2064, 80 L.Ed.2d at 693 ). Winkler contends his counsel'......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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