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State v. Green

Court of Appeals of Louisiana, Fourth Circuit

January 9, 2019

STATE OF LOUISIANA
v.
ANTOINE GREEN

          APPLICATION FOR WRITS DIRECTED TO CRIMINAL DISTRICT COURT ORLEANS PARISH NO. 514-235, SECTION "D" Honorable Paul A Bonin, Judge

          Antoine Green DOC #280380 Dixon Correctional Inst. PRO SE Appellant

          Leon A. Cannizzaro, Jr., District Attorney DISTRICT ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, ORLEANS PARISH COUNSEL FOR STATE OF LOUISIANA/APPELLEE

          Court composed of Judge Edwin A. Lombard, Judge Regina Bartholomew-Woods, Judge Paula A. Brown

          Paula A. Brown, Judge.

         PAB This is a criminal matter. Relator, Antoine Green, seeks supervisory review of the district court's November 13, 2018 judgment denying Relator's motion to correct illegal sentence. For the following reasons, we grant Relator's writ application and remand to the district court.

         PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         In January 2013, Relator pled guilty to attempted first degree murder and domestic abuse aggravated assault. According to the docket master, Relator was sentenced, pursuant to the plea agreement, to ten years at hard labor for attempted first degree murder and five years at hard labor for domestic abuse aggravated assault. The sentences were ordered to run concurrently to each other. Additionally, the State agreed to not file a multiple offender bill.

         In September 2014, Relator filed in the district court a pleading entitled a Motion to Correct Illegal Sentence urging his guilty plea entered for attempted first degree murder was invalid because it was not knowingly and voluntarily entered. Specifically, Relator alleged the State and his attorney induced him to enter the guilty plea by leading him to believe that he would not be sentenced as a multiple offender; thus, he would be eligible to receive "good time" credit toward his ten year at hard labor sentence imposed for attempted first degree murder. Relator contended the primary reason he agreed to enter the plea agreement was receipt of the "good time" credits. Subsequently, he discovered from the Louisiana Department of Corrections he was ineligible to receive "good time" credits toward his ten year sentence resulting in the filing of the motion. Relator acknowledged that the remedies for a breach of a plea agreement were (1) specific performance of the agreement or (2) withdrawal of the guilty plea. Relator prayed for re-sentencing from ten years at hard labor to eight and one/half (8 1/2) years at hard labor, or in the alternative, a hearing on the motion.

         The district court denied the motion and found: (1) the pleading should be construed as an application for post-conviction relief; (2) Relator's pleading was untimely filed under La. C.Cr. P. art. 930.8[1]; and (3) Relator waived review of "all non-jurisdictional defects in the proceedings leading up to the guilty plea" because Relator entered an unconditional guilty plea.

         This writ application followed.

         DISCUSSION

         Relator asserts the district court erred in denying his motion.

         After reviewing the record before this Court, we find the district court correctly found Relator's motion should be construed as an application for post-conviction relief. See State v. Baham, 13-1069, p. 3 (La.App. 4 Cir. 9/10/14), 149 So.3d 1235, 1238 (citations omitted)(wherein this Court held that the appropriate procedural vehicle to challenge a guilty plea after sentencing is an application for post-conviction relief.). However, the district court improperly denied the claim as untimely filed pursuant to La. C.Cr.P. art. 930.8. Relator filed his claim in September 2014, well within the prescriptive period to seek post-conviction relief as set forth in La. C.Cr.P. art. 930.8. Additionally, the district court mistakenly found that Relator, by entering unconditional plea of guilty, waived review of the claim challenging the validity of his plea agreement. See State v. Crosby, 338 So.2d 584, 586 (La. 1976)(citations omitted)(wherein the Supreme ...


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