APPEAL FROM THE TWENTY-FOURTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT PARISH
OF JEFFERSON, STATE OF LOUISIANA NO. 16-4811, DIVISION
"F" HONORABLE MICHAEL P. MENTZ, JUDGE PRESIDING
COUNSEL FOR PLAINTIFF/APPELLEE, STATE OF LOUISIANA Paul D.
Connick, Jr. Terry M. Boudreaux.
COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPELLANT, TERRANCE DARNELL CALLOWAY
Gwendolyn K. Brown.
composed of Judges Susan M. Chehardy, Jude G. Gravois, and
Hans J. Liljeberg
J. LILJEBERG, JUDGE
Terrance Darnell Calloway, appeals the consecutive sentences
the trial court imposed after a jury convicted him of second
degree murder and obstruction of justice. Defendant also
contends the trial court erred by proceeding directly to
sentencing without first obtaining a waiver of sentencing
delays. For the reasons that follow, we vacate
defendant's sentences and remand the matter to the trial
court for further proceedings.
OF THE CASE
September 29, 2016, a Jefferson Parish Grand Jury returned an
indictment charging defendant with second degree murder in
violation of La. R.S. 14:30.1 (count one) and obstruction of
justice in violation of La. R.S. 14:130.1 (count two). On
September 30, 2016, defendant pled not guilty at his
selection occurred on June 11, 2018, and, on June 13, 2018,
the jury returned a verdict of guilty as charged. On June 27,
2018, defendant filed a Motion for New Trial and a Motion for
Post Verdict Judgment of Acquittal. On the same day,
defendant filed a written Motion for Appeal and Designation
to the transcript, on June 28, 2018, the trial court denied
the Motion for New Trial and the Motion for Post Verdict
Judgment of Acquittal and then granted the Motion
for Appeal. After two victim impact statements were read, the
trial court sentenced defendant to life in prison without
benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence on
count one. The trial court also sentenced defendant to forty
years at hard labor on count two to run consecutively with
his sentence on count one. Due to defendant's actions
during sentencing, the trial court also found him in contempt
of court and sentenced defendant to an additional three
raises two sentencing issues as assignments of error on
appeal: 1) The trial court erred by imposing the sentences
consecutively; and 2) The trial court erred by proceeding
directly to sentencing without first obtaining a waiver of
to reaching the merits of defendant's appeal, we must
first address the jurisdictional issue created due to the
trial court's decision to grant defendant's motion
for appeal prior to sentencing defendant. As explained above,
defendant filed his motion for appeal with other post-trial
motions on June 27, 2018. Defendant appeared for sentencing
on June 28, 2018, at which time the trial court proceeded to
deny the post-trial motions and grant the motion for appeal.
Subsequently, the trial court heard victim impact statements
and imposed defendant's sentences.
to La. C.Cr.P. art. 916, a trial court is divested of
jurisdiction upon the granting of a defendant's motion
for appeal. State v. Johnson, 13-75 (La.App. 5 Cir.
10/9/13), 128 So.3d 325, 327. Once the trial court is
divested of jurisdiction, it may take only certain specified
actions, none of which include imposing sentence (except an
enhanced sentence under La. R.S. 15:529.1). La. C.Cr.P. art.
916. A ...