The Nevada Supreme Court removed Middleton’s appointed appellate counsel due to substandard representation. On initial review, the Nevada Supreme Court ordered Middleton's counsel to submit an amended brief, limited to 80 pages. Counsel's "amended" brief was simply the original brief with the final few pages removed so as to meet the 80-page requirement. Counsel had repeatedly violated court orders, and the work product he ultimately submitted was unacceptable for representation of a client who was facing a death sentence.
Hall, Ryan, "Summary of Middleton vs. Warden, 120 Nev. Adv. Rep. 74" (2004). Nevada Supreme Court Summaries. 649.