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Man had no constitutional right to counsel

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The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a man’s claims in support of his petition for a writ of habeas corpus, finding his motion to correct sentence wasn’t a motion pursuant to Indiana Code, but was a collateral attack on his sentence.

U.S. District Judge Sarah Evans Barker in the Indianapolis Division of the Southern District of Indiana dismissed Joshua Resendez’s petition. She ruled the claim was not cognizable in habeas corpus because Resendez was asserting his right to counsel in making a collateral challenge to his conviction in state courts.

Resendez pleaded guilty to robbery in 2002, and while in prison, pleaded guilty to forgery and receiving stolen property in another case. His sentences were ordered to run consecutively; he did not appeal his conviction or sentence in either case. When released, he began serving probation while serving parole. He violated terms of his probation and eventually was ordered to serve the remainder of his sentence in prison.

After his pro se motions in state court to correct sentence were denied, as well as his request for assistance of counsel, he sought relief in federal court.

Judge John Tinder noted at first blush, Resendez’s case appears to present the question whether a I.C. 35-38-1-15 is properly classified as a direct or collateral proceeding for federal habeas purposes, but the 7th Circuit didn’t need to answer that question because it found his claims may not be presented via a motion under that statute.

A motion to correct sentence pursuant to I.C. 35-38-1-15 may only be filed to address a sentence that is “erroneous on its face,” Tinder wrote. Other sentencing errors have to be addressed via direct appeal or post-conviction relief, and the Indiana Supreme Court held that “claims that require consideration of the proceedings before, during or after trial may not be presented by way of a motion to correct sentence.”

The alleged sentencing error in this case is not clear from the face of the judgment, so his sentencing challenge may only be raised on direct appeal or in post-conviction proceedings, the court held.

 

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  1. 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.

  2. 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?

  3. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

  4. The sad thing is that no fish were thrown overboard The "greenhorn" who had never fished before those 5 days was interrogated for over 4 hours by 5 officers until his statement was illicited, "I don't want to go to prison....." The truth is that these fish were measured frozen off shore and thawed on shore. The FWC (state) officer did not know fish shrink, so the only reason that these fish could be bigger was a swap. There is no difference between a 19 1/2 fish or 19 3/4 fish, short fish is short fish, the ticket was written. In addition the FWC officer testified at trial, he does not measure fish in accordance with federal law. There was a document prepared by the FWC expert that said yes, fish shrink and if these had been measured correctly they averaged over 20 inches (offshore frozen). This was a smoke and mirror prosecution.

  5. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

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