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Man kicked out of community corrections for assaulting inmate loses appeal

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A community corrections program has the authority to not accept a man after being released from prison because he kicked another inmate in the face while assigned to a community transition program, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Thursday.

Floyd William Treece appealed the revocation of his community corrections placement. As part of his 14-year sentence for possessing drugs, Treece was to serve time in a community corrections program. He petitioned to be released to a community transition program for the last 120 days of his Department of Correction commitment. He was assigned to the CTP at Tippecanoe County Community Corrections.

But during his time in CTP, he kicked another man in the face after finding the man sitting in the chair where Treece was previously sitting. This was a violation of TCCC’s rule against assault and battery. He was kicked out of the CTP, and then TCCC refused to accept Treece once he was released from the DOC. The state petitioned for him to serve the rest of his sentence in the DOC and his community corrections placement be revoked. The trial court granted the petition.

In Floyd William Treece v. State of Indiana, 79A05-1309-CR-458, Treece argued that TCCC had no authority to reject him because a CTP is a DOC program; permissible DOC disciplinary actions are provided by statute; and such disciplinary actions do not include rejection from a community corrections program.

But CTP is operated by a community corrections program, per statute. That statute says while a person is assigned to CTP, he or she must comply with the rules that are adopted by the community corrections advisory board establishing the program. It does not matter that Treece was still committed to the DOC when he violated TCCC rules, Judge Terry Crone wrote.

The judges rejected Treece’s claim that I.C. 11-11-5 limits the authority of CTPs to impose their own disciplinary measures on a person in their programs who violates their rules. In fact, sections of the statute limit the actions the DOC may take against offenders while they are placed in or assigned to a CTP.

They also rejected Treece’s claim that the trial court abused its discretion in revoking his placement in community corrections because the court didn’t take into account his achievements while in the DOC. But Treece did not merely break a rule; he engaged in an act of violence after minimal provocation, Crone wrote.

The COA remanded to the trial court to clarify Treece’s sentence because, as written, it appears his sentence will be 12 years, not the 14 years handed down.
 

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