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Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Ind. Decisions - Supreme Court issues two today

In Shawn Prickett v. State of Indiana, a 12-page, 5-0 opinion, Justice Sullivan writes:

Defendant Shawn Prickett was convicted of child molesting for having sex with a 13-year-old girl. The presumptive sentence for this crime is 30 years. Prickett was sentenced to 40 years and ordered to pay restitution and register as a sex offender. He contends that the evidence at his trial was insufficient to support his conviction, but we find that there was ample evidence to support the jury’s verdict. He also argues that the restitution and registration orders were im-posed absent jury findings required by Blakely v. Washington, 542 U.S. 296 (2004), but we hold that Blakely imposes no such requirement. We do agree with Prickett that the factors relied on by the trial court did not justify increasing the sentence above 30 years. * * *

[Justice Boehm, concurring in the result, writes] But for Blakely, I would not agree that Prickett’s sentence must be reduced. However, after Blakely, I believe that Prickett’s enhanced sentence violates the Federal Constitution.

In Angela Duncan v. State of Indiana, a 9-page, 4-1 opinion (Justice Dickson dissents without opinion), Justice Boehm writes:
We hold that the Court of Appeals erred in finding a defendant’s Blakely claim to be waived when it was included in her initial brief, which was filed after this Court’s Smylie deci-sion. We also hold that the Defendant’s relatively minor prior convictions do not justify enhancing the sentence.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on November 21, 2006 01:35 PM
Posted to Ind. Sup.Ct. Decisions