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Judges uphold man’s conspiracy conviction

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Although the state charged a man with the non-existent crime of “conspiracy to commit attempted armed robbery,” the record shows Matthew Wilhoite was actually convicted of conspiring to commit armed robbery. As such, the Indiana Court of Appeals rejected his claim he was convicted of a crime that doesn’t exist.

Wilhoite and two others developed a plan to rob Donald Willis. However, the armed robbery was unsuccessful and Wilhoite was arrested a short time later. The state alleged Wilhoite committed “conspiracy to commit attempted armed robbery, a Class B felony,” a crime Wilhoite asserts doesn’t exist.

He didn’t raise this issue during his trial, so the Court of Appeals looked at his argument to determine whether there was fundamental error. The judges concluded there was not.

While the panel agreed that people should not be charged with conspiring to attempt a crime, and that the state referenced a non-existent crime on the charging information, the judges found Wilhoite did not demonstrate fundamental error.

The record reflects that he was convicted of conspiring to commit armed robbery and the jury was instructed on the elements of conspiracy.

“Despite the erroneous title given to his crime, the information indicated elements for conspiracy to commit armed robbery and the jury instructions informed the jurors of the elements they needed to find Wilhoite guilty of conspiracy to commit armed robbery, including ‘the intent to commit the crime,’” Judge Melissa May wrote in Matthew P. Wilhoite v. State of Indiana, 34A04-1303-CR-138. “Thus, the fact that the erroneous name of the crime listed at the top of the charging information did not amount to fundamental error.”

 

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  1. Can I get this form on line,if not where can I obtain one. I am eligible.

  2. What a fine example of the best of the Hoosier tradition! How sad that the AP has to include partisan snark in the obit for this great American patriot and adventurer.

  3. Why are all these lawyers yakking to the media about pending matters? Trial by media? What the devil happened to not making extrajudicial statements? The system is falling apart.

  4. It is a sad story indeed as this couple has been only in survival mode, NOT found guilty with Ponzi, shaken down for 5 years and pursued by prosecution that has been ignited by a civil suit with very deep pockets wrenched in their bitterness...It has been said that many of us are breaking an average of 300 federal laws a day without even knowing it. Structuring laws, & civilForfeiture laws are among the scariest that need to be restructured or repealed . These laws were initially created for drug Lords and laundering money and now reach over that line. Here you have a couple that took out their own money, not drug money, not laundering. Yes...Many upset that they lost money...but how much did they make before it all fell apart? No one ask that question? A civil suit against Williams was awarded because he has no more money to fight...they pushed for a break in order...they took all his belongings...even underwear, shoes and clothes? who does that? What allows that? Maybe if you had the picture of him purchasing a jacket at the Goodwill just to go to court the next day...his enemy may be satisfied? But not likely...bitterness is a master. For happy ending lovers, you will be happy to know they have a faith that has changed their world and a solid love that many of us can only dream about. They will spend their time in federal jail for taking their money from their account, but at the end of the day they have loyal friends, a true love and a hope of a new life in time...and none of that can be bought or taken That is the real story.

  5. Could be his email did something especially heinous, really over the top like questioning Ind S.Ct. officials or accusing JLAP of being the political correctness police.

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