ILNews

Defendant's fleeing justifies delayed arrest

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The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld the revocation of a man’s suspension for probation violations after finding the trial court did not err in ordering the man serve the remainder of his originally suspended sentence.

Jason B. Saunders pleaded guilty to operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated as a Class D felony in 2000, received a suspended sentence, and was placed on probation for two years. He was ordered to obey all laws and refrain from alcohol consumption. A month later, the state filed a notice of probation violation because Saunders never reported to the probation officer as ordered. An arrest warrant was issued the same day, and 11 years later, the warrant was expanded to include Tennessee.

Saunders was arrested in 2011 and had committed several offenses in Tennessee while on probation in Indiana. The trial court rejected his probation officer’s recommendation that he receive a 180-day sanction so that he could go back to Tennessee to face his probation penalties there using “Tennessee tax payers’ money.”

On appeal, Saunders claimed that the state’s 11-year delay in arresting him and pursuing the 2000 probation revocation matter amounted to a denial of his right to due process. He didn’t raise those arguments on the trial level, so the appellate court considered whether there was a fundamental error. Any prejudice that may have resulted to Saunders was because he fled from Indiana for 11 years. He admitted to all the violations and hasn’t shown his defense to the violations was impaired by the state’s delay in prosecution, wrote Judge John Baker.

Saunders’ violation of two conditions of his probation, which included committing several new offenses, justified the imposition of the entirety of his previously suspended three-year sentence, the judges held in Jason B. Saunders v. State of Indiana, No. 06A01-1111-CR-596.

 

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  1. Well, maybe it's because they are unelected, and, they have a tendency to strike down laws by elected officials from all over the country. When you have been taught that "Democracy" is something almost sacred, then, you will have a tendency to frown on such imperious conduct. Lawyers get acculturated in law school into thinking that this is the very essence of high minded government, but to people who are more heavily than King George ever did, they may not like it. Thanks for the information.

  2. I pd for a bankruptcy years ago with Mr Stiles and just this week received a garnishment from my pay! He never filed it even though he told me he would! Don't let this guy practice law ever again!!!

  3. Excellent initiative on the part of the AG. Thankfully someone takes action against predators taking advantage of people who have already been through the wringer. Well done!

  4. Conour will never turn these funds over to his defrauded clients. He tearfully told the court, and his daughters dutifully pledged in interviews, that his first priority is to repay every dime of the money he stole from his clients. Judge Young bought it, much to the chagrin of Conour’s victims. Why would Conour need the $2,262 anyway? Taxpayers are now supporting him, paying for his housing, utilities, food, healthcare, and clothing. If Conour puts the money anywhere but in the restitution fund, he’s proved, once again, what a con artist he continues to be and that he has never had any intention of repaying his clients. Judge Young will be proven wrong... again; Conour has no remorse and the Judge is one of the many conned.

  5. Pass Legislation to require guilty defendants to pay for the costs of lab work, etc as part of court costs...

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