My name is Justin Johnson. I was born October 01, 1985 in the City of St. Louis, Missouri. I’m 29 years of age and have been incarcerated since August of 2009, I’m currently incarcerated at 300 E Pedro Simmons Dr. in Charleston, Missouri 63834.
I was the Defendant in a bench-trial in Cause Number # 1322-CC01318 at the Circuit Court of St. Louis County, 22nd Judicial Circuit, before the Honorable Phillip D. Heagney.
On December 21, 2011 I was convicted after bench-trial of one Count First Degree Murder in violation of RSMo. 565.020, one Count of First Degree Assault in violation of RSMo. 565.050 and two Counts of Armed Criminal Action in violation of RSMo. 575.015.
On February 10, 2012 the Court sentenced the Undersigned to terms of imprisonment of life without possibility of parole.
Undersigned appealed his convictions and sentence to the Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District. The Court of Appeals issued its Per Curiam order and Memorandum Opinion Affirming Undersigned’s convictions and sentence. The Court issued its mandate on April 04, 2013.
The trial court found Undersigned to be an indigent throughout and appointed the Public Defender office to represent Undersigned at trail, and the direct appeal.
One of the grounds in the direct appeal involved the trial judge having had ex-parte communications with the Victim’s family outside of the courtroom without either prosecutor or the public defender being present. The Court even admitted that it was a mistake, on his part, on the record (trial transcript). The Court still found Undersigned guilty.
The appointed public defender did not even object, or request a mistrial, she instead allowed the trial to continue on as if nothing happened. The public defenders only response to me concerning this grievous judicial error was, “Things Are Looking In Our Favor And If Anything Goes Wrong This Issue Will Most Definitely Get Relief Granted During The Direct Appeals.”
Undersigned filed his pro se motion to vacate, set aside or correct the judgment or sentence (29.15) on May 23, 2013. Undersigned was found to be indigent and the public defender’s office was assigned to represent Undersigned, by the trial court.
During the Public Defender’s representation a conflict of interest developed and as a result of that conflict the Public Defender allowed more than sixty (60) days to elapse resulting in abandonment, when the public defender failed to file a timely amended motion.
I filed a pro se motion with the hearing court to relieve appointed counsel from representation, the court re-appointed the same Public Defender that the conflict of interest and abandonment developed with. One year later on May 22, 2014, she filed the amended motion.
I am currently awaiting the hearing court’s decision as to whether the amended motion will be accepted and/or an evidentiary hearing is granted. It should also be noted that the hearing court judge in this cause and action was also the trial court judge in this case.
I seek your assistance to represent my interest in what is the last vestibule in exhaustion of my remedies. I need your professional assistance to ensure, not only exhaustion, proper representation and preservation of the claims. It is believed, by me, that since a very real and apparent conflict of interest has developed and that the client attorney relationship rendered irretrievably broken to the point that I know I would not be treated fairly by the Office of the Public Defender in general at this stage, and by the trial/hearing court in particular who appointed the conflicted attorney. See: State ex rel Nixon v Jaynes, 63 SW3d 210, 217-18 (Mo.banc2001( ) (“…Because The Court Appointed A Lawyer With A Conflict Of Interest Which Forfeited All Of His Rights To Proceed Under The Rule 29.15 That Matter Should Be Treated As Though No Counsel Has Been Appointed.”)
I am innocent of first degree murder, and the other charges in association therewith, I had stressed this before my trial and I still stand by this one fact, “I Am Innocent Of First Degree Murder. The Killer In This Crime Is Still Out There On The Loose.” Even though I am Innocent and stand wrongfully convicted there is a substantial amount of evidence, not heard by the court that would prove my innocence. I also have evidence that my indictment and prosecution for these crimes were politically motivated, in addition to the Saint Louis Police Department causing a major mistake during its initial investigation that cost the City of St. Louis a whooping $400,000.00 due to the mis-handling of this case. That’s $400,000.00 subtracted from the already scarce judicial economy. This high priced mistake was one of many motivating factors the State made me pay with my freedom, and now with my life, if I do not receive your assistance in helping me to vindicate myself from my wrongful conviction.
It is my understanding that your organization may only assists after all remedies have been exhausted, but if you would please give me a minute of your time to understand my position, “In a bench-trial with a conviction that is politically motivated because the St. Louis Police Department caused a $400,000.00 blunder, among other things; a court appointed public defender who is laboring under a conflict of interest, and; who was re-assigned and filed an out of time amended motion that may be dismissed due to the public defender’s failure to comply with the state court’s contemporaneous objection rule.” I believe that if that if the conflicted public defender is relieved by your office, and all of the facts come out, once you review all of the discovery in the case, a new, the results would be in favor of my discharge from my unlawful confinement.
“Will You Help Me?” Please contact me and let me know what you are willing to do. “My Word Is Bond!” If you have a questionare I shall give you honest, right and exact answers to any questions statements or facts you may have for me. Just give me the chance to convince you of my innocence.
I appreciate your time and consideration and I’m looking forward to working with you. Have A Productive Day.
Reg. No. 1124153
Southeast Correctional Center
300 East Pedro Simmons Drive