Castle Doctrine Leads to Not Guilty Verdict of Wayne County Man

A Wayne County Jury returned a unanimous verdict of not guilty for a Detroit man charged with seven felonies on July 17, 2019. Eric Coleman, 27, of Detroit, Michigan, was charged with the following offenses: Discharge of Firearm in a building Causing Injury, Assault with Intent to do Great Bodily Harm, Felonious Assault, False Report of a Felony and three counts of Felony Firearm.

In a case that had garnered a lot of media attention, the defense team of William Amadeo and Peter Winter utilized Michigan’s Castle Doctrine in their advocacy of Coleman. The successful use of the Castle Doctrine has garnered the attention of gun advocates across the state.

Amadeo, a partner at “McManus and Amadeo” in Ann Arbor, Michigan and a Senior Associate for Grabel and Associates in Lansing, Michigan was lead counsel on the case. When asked about the “Castle Doctrine,” Amadeo stated, “Pete Winter and I worked around the clock on this defense. With Michigan being a “stand your ground” state, we presented a theory that our jury related to. Eric [Coleman] was the actual victim in this case, and, sadly, he had to fight for his freedom the way that he did, but in the end, justice prevailed.”

Scott Grabel, the founder of Grabel and Associates, is known for having the top criminal defense team in the state. When asked about the “Castle Doctrine,” Grabel stated, “It takes a lot of courage to use that defense. Bill [Amadeo] and I had discussed the matter numerous times, and I felt that he had a strong case. Wayne County is known to overcharge, and his client was truly defending himself, it’s nice to see justice prevail.”

Matthew McManus, the Managing Member of McManus and Amadeo, did much of the research of the Coleman case. McManus was quoted as saying, “People forget that Eric [Coleman] was initially charged with attempted murder. When we called Mound to get him arraigned that is specifically what the facility told us. Wayne County also violated Eric’s rights by waiting 72 hours to arraign him. In the end, the jury believed in Eric’s innocence.”

When asked why a case like this does not settle, Grabel added, “In Wayne County, whenever you see a gun charge you need to have a defense attorney that is ready to go to trial. Even in a bad case, a supervising attorney may force their prosecutor’s to try the matter. Sometimes in Wayne, there is no meeting of the minds, and that is a scary proposition when dealing with one’s freedom. It only took the jury 90 minutes to come to the right conclusion on this case. I’m glad that Eric Coleman is a free man today.”

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