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Man can't challenge motion after guilty plea

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A defendant who pleaded guilty to a drug charge can no longer challenge the trial court denial of his pretrial motion to suppress, affirmed the Indiana Court of Appeals today.

Tommy D. Alvey challenged the trial court order denying his pretrial motion to suppress following a "conditional guilty plea" in which he and the state agreed he had reserved his right to appeal the court's order.

Alvey was arrested on various drug charges and carrying a handgun without a license, and he agreed to plead guilty to dealing methamphetamine and carrying a handgun without a license. Alvey appealed the trial court denial of his pretrial motion to suppress evidence after the court sentenced him.

In Tommy D. Alvey v. State of Indiana, No. 82A01-0804-CR-164, the appellate court examined previous rulings by the Court of Appeals on the issue of whether a defendant can challenge a pretrial motion after pleading guilty. The appellate court relied heavily on the Indiana Supreme Court's Nov. 12 opinion in Norris v. State, No. 43S03-0807-CR-379, to rule that an evidentiary challenge after pleading guilty isn't permissible, wrote Judge Edward Najam.

On appeal, Alvey didn't challenge whether his guilty plea was entered knowingly and voluntarily, or whether the court accepted his plea over a claim of innocence, which may be a strategic decision by his counsel, wrote the judge.

"Thus, Alvey's plea forecloses his right to challenge the pretrial motion to suppress, and we must affirm the trial court's entry of judgment of conviction against Alvey," wrote Judge Najam.

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  1. Hail to our Constitutional Law Expert in the Executive Office! “What you’re not paying attention to is the fact that I just took an action to change the law,” Obama said.

  2. What is this, the Ind Supreme Court thinking that there is a separation of powers and limited enumerated powers as delegated by a dusty old document? Such eighteen century thinking, so rare and unwanted by the elites in this modern age. Dictate to us, dictate over us, the massess are chanting! George Soros agrees. Time to change with times Ind Supreme Court, says all President Snows. Rule by executive decree is the new black.

  3. I made the same argument before a commission of the Indiana Supreme Court and then to the fedeal district and federal appellate courts. Fell flat. So very glad to read that some judges still beleive that evidentiary foundations matter.

  4. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  5. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

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