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State v. Flugence

Court of Appeals of Louisiana, Fifth Circuit

June 27, 2018

STATE OF LOUISIANA
v.
MATTHEW J. FLUGENCE

          ON APPEAL FROM THE TWENTY-FOURTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT PARISH OF JEFFERSON, STATE OF LOUISIANA NO. 13-3692, DIVISION "G" HONORABLE E. ADRIAN ADAMS, JUDGE PRESIDING

          PLAINTIFF/APPELLANT, BRETT S. CASIMER In Proper Person PLAINTIFF/APPELLANT, BRETT S. CASIMER In Proper Person

          COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPELLEE, PAUL D. CONNICK, JR., DISTRICT ATTORNEY FOR THE 24TH JDC; PARISH OF JEFFERSON STATE OF LOUISIANA Paul D. Connick, Jr. Terry M. Boudreaux David B. Wheeler

          Panel composed of Judges Jude G. Gravois, Robert A. Chaisson, and Hans J. Liljeberg

          HANS J. LILJEBERG JUDGE.

         Defendant appeals his conviction and sentence for first degree murder. For the following reasons, we affirm defendant's conviction and sentence. We also grant appellate counsel's motion to withdraw as counsel of record.

         PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         On November 14, 2013, defendant, Matthew J. Flugence, was charged by bill of indictment with the first degree murder of a known juvenile in violation of La. R.S. 14:30. Defendant pleaded not guilty at his arraignment.

         On March 24, 2016, defendant withdrew his plea of not guilty, and after being advised of his Boykin[1] rights, pleaded guilty as charged. As part of the plea agreement, the State withdrew its intent to pursue the death penalty. Thereafter, with the consent of the parties and in compliance with La. C.Cr.P. arts. 557(A)[2]and 905(B), [3] defendant was sentenced to a term of life imprisonment at hard labor, without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.[4] Defendant sought an out-of-time appeal, which was granted by the trial court on September 11, 2017.

         FACTS

         Because defendant's conviction was the result of a guilty plea, the facts underlying the crime of conviction are not fully developed in the record. The facts were gleaned from the factual basis provided by the State at the guilty plea proceeding. The State alleged that:

[I]f this case were to have proceeded to trial the State would prove beyond a reasonable doubt that on July 13, 2013 that the Defendant in Jefferson Parish, State of Louisiana committed and violated the charge of Louisiana Revised Statute 14:30 and that he did commit the first degree [murder] of a known juvenile, date of birth March 3, 2007.

         LAW AND DISCUSSION

         Pursuant to the procedure adopted by this Court in State v. Bradford, 95-929, pp. 3-4 (La.App. 5 Cir. 6/25/96), 676 So.2d 1108, 1110-11, [5] appointed appellate counsel has filed a brief asserting that she has thoroughly reviewed the trial court record and cannot find any non-frivolous issues to raise on appeal. Accordingly, pursuant to Anders v. California, 386 U.S. 738, 87 S.Ct. 1396, 18 L.Ed.2d 493 (1967) and State v. Jyles, ...


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