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Attorney Brian Tevis Convinces State Not to Retry Client for Murder

Justice can sometimes take years, but we don’t give up at the Tevis Law Firm, LLC. After 8 years and three trips to the Georgia Supreme Court, our client is a free man.

Attorney Brian Tevis’ tenacity and legal acumen are brought to bear on every case he takes. With more than a thousand cases under his belt, he has tremendous experience in effectively building strong defenses in even the most complex cases.

Attorney Tevis has experience in every stage of criminal cases. In this specific matter, Attorney Tevis was brought onto the case after the client had already gone to trial and been convicted.

Appeals Court Awards a New Trial

John Johnson was arrested in 2006 and faced numerous felony charges including murder. He was represented by different lawyers over several years. He eventually went to trial and was convicted of murder in 2014. Mr. Johnson was sentenced to life in prison plus five years for the murder and other charges.

After his conviction and sentencing, his family decided he needed new representation to appeal the conviction. They reached out to Attorney Tevis.

In thoroughly examining the case, he saw several strategies that could result in the conviction being overturned. The absence of strong evidence was coupled with the main witness admitting his memory of the night wasn’t clear because of being impaired by drugs and alcohol. In addition, the judge gave an improper jury instruction that allowed the jury to convict on less evidence than was required under Georgia law.

The appeal was successful. We secured a murder conviction reversal and a new trial.

Georgia Supreme Court Reaffirms Right to New Trial

Unsurprisingly, the State of Georgia appealed that decision to the Supreme Court. The court reaffirmed our client’s right to a new trial.

With the conviction reversed on appeal, Attorney Tevis then argued that the state should be barred from retrying the case. The evidence was insufficient the first time so double Jeopardy prevented a re-trial. The trial court denied this motion, which the Supreme Court reaffirmed. A new trial could go forward.

Mr. Johnson was initially denied the right to be free on bond while awaiting his new trial. Attorney Tevis, again, took the case up to the Supreme Court on the matter of bond. Although the Supreme Court said the judge was wrong in her analysis, it ruled that she could deny bond nonetheless.

Attorney Tevis did not give up. He continued to pursue a bond for his client with the trial court and was eventually able to secure a bond for Mr. Johnson. He picked him up from the jail, got him some clothes, and drove him to the airport to go home. He went home to be with his family for the first time in 8 years while awaiting a new trial.

Negotiated Plea Results in Freedom

The case had holes, inconsistencies, and scant evidence from the beginning. The leading priority was to save our client from being subjected to a new trial. Attorney Tevis began pointing out every weakness in the state’s case. He also made prosecutors aware of legal hurdles they faced and additional motions he planned to file for his client.

The state began to see the challenges they would confront in a new trial and agreed to come to the bargaining table. The result was a negotiated, time-served plea. Mr. Johnson will not stand trial again. He is free. He isn’t even on probation.

Attorney Tevis Fights to the End for His Clients

Not every case involves a potential life sentence, but criminal charges still have serious consequences that impact the rest of your life. If you are arrested or are being investigated for a crime in the Atlanta area, you can trust that the Tevis Law Firm, LLC will comb through every detail of your case to build a strong defense strategy.

Attorney Tevis doesn’t use boiler-plate tactics. The charges, the arrest, the evidence, the witnesses, and all other aspects of the case must be scrutinized. Only then can every potential defense avenue be brought to light.

Check out the videos from the trial: Video 1 | Video 2

When you need a staunch advocate who vigorously fights for their clients, contact Attorney Tevis. Schedule a free initial consultation by calling (404) 907-2527 or submitting our online form.