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Justices: Belated appeals rule doesn’t apply to probation revocations

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The Indiana Supreme Court has put its stamp of approval on an intermediate appellate panel’s ruling last year, finding that the state’s existing Post-Conviction Rule 2 that allows for belated appeals on certain criminal cases doesn’t apply to probation revocations.

In a two-page per curiam opinion in Edward Dawson v. State of Indiana, No. 49S02-1103-CR-176, the justices unanimously granted transfer on a Marion County case the Indiana Court of Appeals had decided Dec. 17, 2010.

Marion Superior Judge Robert Altice had imposed an eight-year suspended sentence with three years probation for the defendant, who’d pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit robbery and carrying a handgun without a license. The judge later revoked his probation and sentenced him to six years after a probation violation, but he didn’t file a motion to correct error or any appeal notice within 30 days as required. Dawson said he later learned generally about his right to appeal after meeting a law clerk with the Indiana Youth Center, and eight months following the revocation order he asked for a belated appeal. Judge Altice allowed it “outright” and permitted a hearing, but confirmed the six-year sanction he’d ordered.

The Court of Appeals found that Post-Conviction Rule 2 is not available for belated appeals of probation revocation orders and dismissed the appeal, and now the justices have affirmed that decision.

“We agree with the Court of Appeals’ analysis that the sanction imposed when probation is revoked does not qualify as a ‘sentence’ under the Rule, and therefore Dawson is not an ‘eligible defendant,’” the per curiam opinion reads. ”Accordingly, we grant transfer and adopt and incorporate by reference the opinion of the Court of Appeals under Appellate Rule 58(A)(1).”

This is the first time the state’s highest court has explicitly determined whether and to what extent Post-Conviction Rule 2 applies to probation revocation orders, either by opinion or rule amendment even after the intermediate appellate court had decided that matter in Glover v. State, 684 N.E.2d 542, 543 (Ind. Ct. App. 1997).

Justices addressed PCR 2 and probation revocation hearings in Cooper v. State, 917 N.E.2d 667, 673 (Ind. 2009), but the court ruled that because Cooper didn’t petition for permission to file a belated notice of appeal, the case wasn’t an appropriate vehicle to resolve the question of whether probation revocation orders are appealable under PCR 2.

That question is now resolved.

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  1. Uh oh, someone is really going to get their panti ... uh, um ... I mean get upset now: http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/mar/31/arkansas-passes-indiana-style-religious-freedom-bill

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  3. Sociologist of religion Peter Berger once said that the US is a “nation of Indians ruled by Swedes.” He meant an irreligious elite ruling a religious people, as that Sweden is the world’s least religious country and India the most religious. The idea is that American social elites tend to be much less religious than just about everyone else in the country. If this is true, it helps explain the controversy raking Indiana over Hollywood, San Fran, NYC, academia and downtown Indy hot coals. Nevermind logic, nevermind it is just the 1993 fed bill did, forget the Founders, abandon of historic dedication to religious liberty. The Swedes rule. You cannot argue with elitists. They have the power, they will use the power, sit down and shut up or feel the power. I know firsthand, having been dealt blows from the elite's high and mighty hands often as a mere religious plebe.

  4. I need helping gaining custody of my 5 and 1 year old from my alcoholic girlfriend. This should be an easy case for any lawyer to win... I've just never had the courage to take her that far. She has a record of public intox and other things. She has no job and no where to live othe than with me. But after 5 years of trying to help her with her bad habit, she has put our kids in danger by driving after drinking with them... She got detained yesterday and the police chief released my kids to me from the police station. I live paycheck to paycheck and Im under alot of stress dealing with this situation. Can anyone please help?

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