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State v. Gumms

Court of Appeals of Louisiana, Fifth Circuit

November 15, 2017

STATE OF LOUISIANA
v.
DERRICK GUMMS

         ON APPEAL FROM THE TWENTY-FOURTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT PARISH OF JEFFERSON, STATE OF LOUISIANA NO. 15-1144, DIVISION "M" HONORABLE HENRY G. SULLIVAN, JR., JUDGE PRESIDING

          Paul D. Connick, Jr., Terry M. Boudreaux COUNSEL FOR PLAINTIFF/APPELLEE, STATE OF LOUISIANA

          Prentice L. White COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPELLANT, DERRICK GUMMS

          In Proper Person DEFENDANT/APPELLANT, DERRICK GUMMS

          Judges Susan M. Chehardy, Jude G. Gravois, and Robert A. Chaisson

          SUSAN M. CHEHARDY CHIEF JUDGE

         On appeal, defendant challenges his adjudication as a second felony offender. For the following reasons, we affirm defendant's underlying convictions and sentences as well as defendant's multiple offender adjudication and enhanced sentence.

         Facts and Procedural History

         Because defendant pled guilty, the facts were not fully developed at a trial. However, during the guilty plea colloquy, the State provided the following factual basis for the guilty pleas:

Derrick Gumms engaged in conduct that furthered the aims of an Enterprise by engaging in a pattern of racketeering activity and conspired with members of that Enterprise to distribute controlled dangerous substances, including cocaine, heroin, and marijuana.
This conduct, which occurred between 2006 and 2015, included participating in the operation of a narcotics distribution network on the West Bank of Jefferson Parish wherein a violent street gang, named by its members the "Harvey Hustlers, " obtained controlled dangerous substances from associates and Enterprise members who transported the drugs into the metropolitan New Orleans area.
The ranking members of the Harvey Hustlers then directed the conversion of these drugs into a saleable form, such as converting powder cocaine to crack cocaine, and provided the drugs to rank and file Harvey Hustlers who sold the drug product on the street for the profit of Enterprise members.
Members of the Enterprise who engaged in this activity on a daily basis, other than when one or more of them were in jail, included Mr. Gumms, multiple individuals named in the indictment, and others not included in the indictment.
This activity included all of them working on the streets of Scotsdale, in sight of each other, selling cocaine, heroin or marijuana.

         On February 26, 2015, the Jefferson Parish grand jury indicted Derrick Gumms, defendant herein, and twenty other co-defendants on thirty criminal counts for various acts of racketeering committed in furtherance of a narcotics distribution network in Jefferson Parish, operated by a street gang known as the "Harvey Hustlers." Specifically, defendant was charged with three counts: racketeering, in violation of La. R.S. 15:1352; conspiracy to distribute cocaine, in violation of La. R.S. 40:979 and La. R.S. 40:967(A); and conspiracy to distribute heroin and marijuana, in violation of La. R.S. 40:979 and La. R.S. 40:966(A). At his arraignment on March 9, 2015, defendant pled not guilty to the charged offenses.

         On January 28, 2016, defendant withdrew his prior pleas of not guilty and pled guilty as charged. In accordance with the plea agreement, the court sentenced defendant as follows: for racketeering, twenty years imprisonment at hard labor; for conspiracy to distribute cocaine, fifteen years imprisonment at hard labor; and for conspiracy to distribute heroin, [1] twenty years imprisonment at hard labor without the benefit of probation, ...


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