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Justices seek amicus briefs in partial consecutive sentence case

September 18, 2013

The Indiana Supreme Court wants to hear from the legal community: Are partial consecutive sentences allowable?

The court posted an order dated Sept. 9 in which it made an appeal for amicus briefs as it considers an appeal filed by a pro se litigant. The case is Bryant E. Wilson v. State of Indiana, 27S02-1309-CR-584. Parties interested in submitting an amicus brief should enter an appearance in the case by Friday, the order says.

Wilson was convicted of Class A felony charges of rape and criminal deviate conduct and Class B felony robbery. He was sentenced to an aggregate executed prison term of 50 years – concurrent 45-year terms for the Class A felonies, plus 20 years for the Class B felony, with five years of that sentence to be served consecutive to the 45-year term. A divided panel of the Court of Appeals affirmed the ruling out of Grant Superior Court.

The decision focused on the legality of partial consecutive sentences. “The Supreme Court is interested in receiving additional briefing on the issue of whether the imposition of a partially consecutive sentence is error,” Chief Justice Brent Dickson wrote in the order.

The order directs the public defender of Indiana to file a brief no later than Oct. 21, the deadline for other amici to file. The state response is due by Nov. 27, as is Wilson’s supplemental brief.

Recipients of the notice also included the Indiana Public Defender Council, Indiana Prosecuting Attorneys Council, Indiana Judicial Center and the Indiana State Bar Association. “Those entities are encouraged to distribute a copy of this order to others as they see fit,” Dickson wrote.

 

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