Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law

OSJCL Amici Board of Advisors

OSJCL Amici: Views from the Field

Bell v. Kelley

Issue is whether 4th circuit erred when applying restrictive standard of 28 USC 2254 which is reserved for claims adjudicated on merits in state court, to evaluate a claim predicated on evidence of prejudice the state court refused to consider and received for the first time in a federal evidentiary hearing.

Bell was charged and convicted of murder of a police Sergeant and sentenced to death. Bell claims there was insufficient legal counseling regarding mitigation, namely that he had lived a tough life, and that several wives had good relationships with him, which would seemingly negate the prosecutions.



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