Kansas Supreme Court reverses Riley County man’s aggravated criminal sodomy convictions; case remanded to district court

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Ziad Khalil-Alsalaami (Kansas Dept. of Corrections photo)

The Kansas Supreme Court has reversed two aggravated criminal sodomy convictions for a Riley County man.

Ziad Khalil-Alsalaami was previously convicted of the two counts involving a 13-year-old girl at a house party in 2010. The Supreme Court said in its decision Friday the convictions must be reversed because his trial counsel was ineffective and therefore violated his rights under the Sixth Amendment, which ensures a right to a speedy trial.

Khalil-Alsaalami argued his trial attorneys were ineffective because they stipulated that a confession he made during police interrogation was voluntary. At a hearing later on his ineffective assistance claims, Khalil-Alsalaami’s counsel acknowledged 3 of the 5 voluntariness factors weighed in favor of suppression. The counsel contended they didn’t challenge the admissibility as a matter of trial strategy.

The Supreme Court held such a strategy constituted ineffective assistance and may have been enough that Khalil-Alsalaami may have been acquitted. The case has been remanded to Riley County District Court.

The full ruling can be found here.

Oral arguments from the case are below.

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Brandon Peoples

KMAN News Director and host of In Focus. Contact Brandon at Brandon@1350KMAN.com

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