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Supreme Court takes case involving sentencing discrepancy

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The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer to a case in which a defendant challenged his sentence following his guilty plea to Class B felony burglary and admitting to being a habitual offender.

A written plea agreement called for James Walsh to be sentenced to 20 years for the burglary conviction and a consecutive 30 years for the habitual offender determination with 20 years of the sentence suspended to probation. The trial court entered the habitual-offender enhancement as a separate, consecutive sentence.

The post-conviction court ordered he be re-sentenced to 20 years for the burglary conviction, enhanced by 10 years because it was an error to impose a separate, consecutive sentence for the habitual-offender enhancement.

The Court of Appeals reversed and remanded in a not-for-publication opinion June 24. The trial court was without authority to enter a sentence different than that provided for in the plea agreement, even if it was to Walsh’s benefit, the appellate court ruled. The judges remanded to correct the sentence order and abstract of judgment to reflect that the 30-year sentence for the habitual-offender adjudication serves to enhance the 20-year burglary sentence, with 20 years suspended to probation.

The case is James Walsh v. State of Indiana, No. 52S05-1009-CR-506.

The high court also granted transfer with opinions last week to Max Koenig v. State of Indiana, No. 42S04-1009-CR-505, Virginia Meister v. State of Indiana and Union City, No. 68S04-1009-CV-510, and Rosalynn West v. Betty Wadlington, et al., No. 49S02-1009-CV-509.
 

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  1. Based on several recent Indy Star articles, I would agree that being a case worker would be really hard. You would see the worst of humanity on a daily basis; and when things go wrong guess who gets blamed??!! Not biological parent!! Best of luck to those who entered that line of work.

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  4. Law school is social control the goal to produce a social product. As such it began after the Revolution and has nearly ruined us to this day: "“Scarcely any political question arises in the United States which is not resolved, sooner or later, into a judicial question. Hence all parties are obliged to borrow, in their daily controversies, the ideas, and even the language, peculiar to judicial proceedings. As most public men [i.e., politicians] are, or have been, legal practitioners, they introduce the customs and technicalities of their profession into the management of public affairs. The jury extends this habitude to all classes. The language of the law thus becomes, in some measure, a vulgar tongue; the spirit of the law, which is produced in the schools and courts of justice, gradually penetrates beyond their walls into the bosom of society, where it descends to the lowest classes, so that at last the whole people contract the habits and the tastes of the judicial magistrate.” ? Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America

  5. Attorney? Really? Or is it former attorney? Status with the Ind St Ct? Status with federal court, with SCOTUS? This is a legal newspaper, or should I look elsewhere?

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