Cutbirth v. State

In Cutbirth v. State, 751 P.2d 1257 (Wyo. 1988) the Court noted, "generally, . . . the mere fact that counsel failed to recognize the factual or legal basis for a claim, or failed to raise the claim despite recognizing it, does not constitute cause for procedural default." 751 P.2d at 1263. It has long been recognized that raising every conceivable issue on appeal is not always advantageous as it can lessen the impact of more specific issues that offer a better chance of success. Accordingly, the simple failure to raise a issue on appeal, even if it was meritorious, does not necessarily demonstrate ineffective assistance of counsel. Id. Instead, "it must be demonstrated that counsel's representation was deficient by showing errors were made that were so serious that counsel was not functioning in accordance with the constitutional guarantee, and furthermore, the deficient performance prejudiced the appellant." Id. at 1263-64.