Convicted ex-sheriff wants sentence tossed, blames lawyer

Apr 8, 2019

By RUSSELL CONTRERAS Associated PressALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A former New Mexico sheriff convicted of abusing a driver in a bizarre, off-duty traffic stop that prosecutors described as a fit of road rage wants his prison sentence tossed.Former Rio Arriba County Sheriff Thomas Rodella recently filed a motion to vacate his sentence over claims his attorney failed to provide an effective defense.According to court papers filed in U.S. District Court in Albuquerque, Rodella says attorney Robert Gorence refused to let him testify on his own behalf, resulting in "a miscarriage of justice." Court documents also accuse Gorence of failing to investigate critical issues in the case.Gorence did not immediately return an email requesting comment.Thomas Rodella was sentenced in 2015 to 10 years.  He's serving time at a federal prison in Seagoville, Texas.