Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law

OSJCL Amici Board of Advisors

OSJCL Amici: Views from the Field

Vermont v. Brillon

  • Slip Opinion: Issued on March 9, 2009.
  • Background: Brillon was charged with aggravated assault and he already had three prior felony convictions, so he was facing a life sentence. While he was awaiting trial, his public defender made several continuance motions and the case was delayed for various reasons. The case had been delayed for three years when it was finally brought to trial.
  • Holding: The Supreme Court upheld Brillon’s conviction. It followed the general rule that delays in a case are attributable to the defendant, not the attorney. Therefore, because the delays were not attributable to a state actor, the Vermont Supreme Court erred by reversing the Defendant’s conviction.



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