Criminal Defendant's Choice Not to Be Advised by Standby Counsel
In State v. Knight, 866 So. 2d 1195, 1204 (Fla. 2003), the trial court advised the defendant that standby counsel was available to answer any questions that he had. See id. at 1204 n.11.
Standby counsel subsequently independently offered the defendant assistance with the jury instructions. See id.
When the trial court inquired of the defendant with regard to standby counsel's offer, the defendant advised that assistance was not necessary. See id.
Based upon this assertion, the trial court informed the defendant:
If you request standby counsel assisting you in going over those jury instructions, he indicated to me that he is willing to do so, but without your request, I ask standby counsel to remain in his seat away from you so that it does not appear that you are represented by counsel or that he is participating in any way. Id. at 1205.
The court denied relief on his ineffectiveness claim there, concluding that the limitations placed on standby counsel by the trial court were based on the defendant's stated desire that he be allowed to represent himself unimpeded. See id. at 1205-06.