The Experienced Team at Michael Kennedy McIntyre and Associates

Michael Kennedy McIntyre has built a career as a successful post-conviction attorney through his work with Michael Kennedy McIntyre & Associates, an Atlanta law firm he founded in 1985. In pursuing appeals, pardons, and parole for his clients, he relies on the support of the following members of his experienced staff.

Jessica A. Lexmond, Associate Attorney
Ms. Lexmond has represented clients of Michael Kennedy McIntyre & Associates since graduating from Emory University School of Law in 2008. While completing her law degree, she interned with the firm, as well as developed skills in criminal and appellate defense through internships with the Office of the Georgia Capital Defender and the Federal Defender Program.

Marla Blackmon, Parole Specialist
Ms. Blackmon’s career has seen her spend 24 years with the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles, where her last position was Assistant Director of Guidelines/Appeals Officer. Ms. Blackmon is also a former member of the Georgia Department of Corrections and has applied her expertise in both corrections and parole with Michael Kennedy McIntyre & Associates since 2012.

Erica Sessions, Office Manager
Ms. Sessions joined the firm in 2001. She is responsible for conducting consultations with potential clients of the firm and their families. A recipient of a bachelor of business administration from Georgia State University, she also oversees office functions as well as handles the firm’s financials.

Life Sentence and Parole in Georgia

Michael Kennedy McIntyre & Associates is an Atlanta, Georgia-based law firm that specializes in post-conviction representation. The firm offers a broad range of services and employs two former Parole Board employees to assist with the firm’s parole cases. Michael Kennedy McIntyre & Associates also work with offenders sentenced to life in prison. According to the State of Georgia Laws, the Parole Board will review cases of offenders sentenced to a defined period of time as they become eligible for parole and set a Tentative Parole Month (TPM). The TPM is the date when the Parole Board will make the final review of a case and decide whether to grant parole or not. However, for offenders sentenced to a life sentence, the TPM does not apply. The Parole Board reviews the cases of life offenders as they become eligible and decides whether or not to grant parole and, if parole is not granted, they decide the date on which the Parole Board will review the case again. The Parole Board will reconsider life sentence cases a minimum of every eight years. Crimes committed before 1995 and deemed one of “seven deadly sins” become eligible for parole consideration on a life sentence after seven years. Similar crimes committed in 1995 and later become eligible for parole consideration after 14 years on a life sentence. However, since July 1, 2006, such crimes only gain eligibility for parole consideration after thirty years on a life sentence.

A Look at the State Bar of Georgia’s Law-Related Education Program

Grounds for a Post-Conviction Appeal










An accomplished criminal defense attorney based in Atlanta, Michael Kennedy McIntyre founded Michael Kennedy McIntyre & Associates in 1985, a legal firm that deals exclusively with post-conviction representation. A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) School of Law, Michael Kennedy McIntyre worked as an attorney in various capacities before establishing his law firm. Michael Kennedy McIntyre & Associates handles various post-conviction criminal defense aspects such as appeals. An appeal is a request placed before a higher (appellate) court to review and change a decision made by a lower court. The defendant can either challenge the conviction itself or challenge the sentence without referring to the underlying conviction. A successful appeal can end a case entirely or restore a case back to the initial stages. A post-conviction appeal can be made in cases where the defendant feels the verdict rendered was not sufficiently supported by the evidence, there was a miscarriage of justice, or the judge made an error of law. An appeal can focus on the weaknesses of the evidence with an aim to convince the appellate court that the evidence used by jurors to convict was too weak. Appeals focusing on error of law are aimed at proving errors of law such as a judge giving incorrect directions to a jury, the wrongful admission of evidence, or an incorrect interpretation of a defendant’s rights occurring during the trial. Miscarriage of justice appeals challenge errors of both fact and law such as a jury member being biased or a judge refusing to provide an interpreter for an accused person.