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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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  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

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