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In one case, defendant appealed from the trial court’s revocation of his suspended sentence. His sole argument on appeal was that the trial court lacked authority to impose post imprisonment supervision at the time of the revocation. At the time that he was sentenced in 2013, a number of post imprisonment supervision was ordered. He argued that while the trial court had the power and authority to revoke all or part of his original sentence up until the expiration of its original term, a suspended sentence cannot be lengthened beyond the term of the original sentence. The appellate court disagreed.
The state legislatures has passed numerous provisions regarding post imprisonment supervision. These competing statutes have created confusion in the District Court’s. Therefore the appellate court had to reconcile the competing statutes and given clear roles for the district courts to apply.
Courts must abide by rules of statutory construction. Statutes must be construed to determine the intent of the legislature. They also must be construed to reconcile provisions to render them consistent in giving intelligent effect to each. It’s well-established that statutes are to be construed according to the plain and ordinary meaning of their language. Each part of various statutes must be given intelligent effect. An appellate court will avoid any statutory construction that would render any part of the statute useless. If there is irreconcilable conflicting statutory language, the later enacted legislation controls.
In another case, a man named Tucker raised three arguments in his appeal. The first was that the state improperly used a stale prior conviction to enhance his sentence. Secondly he argued that he failed to receive effective assistance of counsel regarding his status as a habitual offender. He argued that as a consequence this resulted in the states and proper use of a prior conviction to enhance a sentence. Lastly he argued that because the trial court’s instructions improperly allowed to conviction for assault and battery with a dangerous weapon without requiring proof of intent to kill, the judgment against him must be modified.
As to his first argument, the Oklahoma court of criminal appeals found that there was a high probability that the prior conviction used to enhance the defendant’s sentence was stale. Enhance sentence was based on one prior conviction. The range of punishment for that crime is charged was 10 years to life in prison. There was no minimum sentence for assault and battery with a deadly weapon as a first offense.
A sentence may be enhanced with a prior conviction if the current offenses committed within 10 years following the completion of the previous sentence. The 10 year period may be prolonged if a person is convicted of a misdemeanor involving moral turpitude before the completion of the prior offense.
The states argument turned on whether 10 years have passed between Tucker’s last conviction in his current conviction, and whether the misdemeanor conviction of domestic abuse involves a crime of moral turpitude. The defendant admitted that he had a prior conviction for accessory after the fact of armed robbery. It originally planned in 1999. However he successfully completed 36 months of supervised probation the burden is on the defendant to show that the sentence the former conviction has been satisfied for more than 10 years.
Domestic violence is not a crime of moral turpitude. Moral turpitude is defined as anything done contrary to justice, honesty, musty, or good morals. One federal court has defined moral turpitude to those crimes that are of the greatest offense. This includes felonies, infamous crimes, and those that are malum in se. The misdemeanor crime of domestic assault battery does not fit within the traditional definitions of moral turpitude.
Basically, domestic violence is a crime of violence against the person. It is like assault and battery, said Tulsa criminal defense attorney Stephen Cale.
Many appeals cases deal with murder convictions. In January 2006, police found two women stabbed to death in a Tulsa apartment. One woman was found lying on her bed while the other was found lying on the bedroom floor. Evidence at the scene indicated that a struggle between the victims and their assailant was confined to the bedroom. The apartment was located on the second floor. The tenants bedroom window was broken and the screen had been pulled out. Blood was found on the bottom ledge of the windowsill. Blood was also found on the kitchen floor and countertop. It was also found on the floor the bathroom and wanted toilet paper roll.
Police investigated various potential suspects. However their investigation turned up nothing concrete and the case grew cold until they hit through the combined DNA Index system resulted in a match. A DNA match was found between the defendant’s DNA profile in the DNA obtained from the blood on the windowsill and toilet paper roll. The defendant’s DNA profile have been entered into the database because he was serving a seven year sentence in Mississippi. Afterwards, police got a search warrant to obtain a DNA sample from the defendant. The search warrant was executed at the Mississippi prison where the defendant was being housed. Testing confirmed the defendants present at the crime scene.
The defendant argued on appeal that his rights under the interstate agreement on detainers act or violated when the state failed to bring him to trial within hundred and 20 days. This act is a compact among 48 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, and the United States. It is a federal law subject to federal interpretation.
The act provides for procedures for transfer of prisoners between federal and state jurisdictions. Its purpose is to encourage speedy and orderly disposition of outstanding charges. The 120 day time limit can be extended for good cause shown, said Tulsa criminal defense attorney Stephen Cale.