Oral argument: Oct. 31, 2011
Appealed from: Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District (Sept. 27, 2010)
After being charged with a felony for driving with a revoked license, Respondent Galin E. Frye was offered two plea bargain options: one, plead guilty to the felony with a recommended three years of imprisonment, or two, plead guilty to a misdemeanor with a recommended 90 days in jail. However, Frye’s counsel never informed him of the plea options, and he subsequently pled guilty to the original felony charge. Frye now appeals, arguing that his counsel’s failure to inform him of the plea bargain violated his Sixth Amendment right to effective assistance of counsel. The State of Missouri, as Petitioner, argues that Frye’s situation falls outside of Sixth Amendment protections, and that, even if he was wronged, there is no available remedy. The Supreme Court’s decision in this case will determine whether courts can relieve defendants convicted pursuant to constitutionally adequate procedures if their lawyer made an error during plea negotiations.