Client was charged with felony First Degree Burglary, misdemeanor Trespass and Theft. Defense, by showing other contributing factors, was able to procure a continuance for dismissal. With conditions, including voluntary acceptance of appropriate medical care, client avoids conviction and keeps record clean.
We presented a M’Naghten defense, that is, not guilty by reason of mental illness. Competence was first examined, and medical treatment of schizophrenia proved successful.
Client was charged with felony 5th Degree Sale and 5th Degree Possession of Marijuana. Through case negotiations, we were able to get a dismissal of the sale charge and a stay of adjudication of the possession charge. Client served two days of jail and sentence to serve, but is now able to get a dismissal of the possession charge, once probation is completed. His record will remain clean.
Client was charged with felony Aggravated Forgery and gross misdemeanor Giving Peace Officer False Name of Another Person. We argued the scope of search exceeded powers granted to police. We were able to procure a dismissal of both charges. This protected client’s ability to pursue a change in his immigration status.
Client was charged with felony 5th Degree Possession Schedule 1, not small amount of marijuana. By arguing the existence of faulty probable cause, we were able to get a stay of adjudication for client. Upon successful completion of probationary period, the charge will be dismissed from his record.
Client was charged with five counts of felony Possession of Firearm by one convicted or adjudicated delinquent for crime of violence, calling for mandatory prison sentence. Through our investigation, legal research, and continued negotiation, we were able to garner dismissals of four of the five counts, and a stay of adjudication on the fifth. Client was thus able to avoid jail time and keep this charge off of his record.
Client was charged with felony Cruelty to Animals. Through case investigation, we were able to show sufficient basis for a dismissal of charges. Client’s record was kept clean.
Client was charged with felony First Degree Damage to Property and felony Dangerous Weapon, Reckless Discharge. Client successfully completed reparations and demonstrated through personal accountability and actions to garner a Continuance for Dismissal to maintain a clean record.
Client was charged with DWI, a first time offense. We conducted a contested evidentiary hearing on our motions to dismiss and suppress. The Court ordered suppression of the urine test result and dismissed the charge of operating a motor vehicle with an alcohol concentration over .08, on the basis that the client did not voluntarily consent to the test. Client pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of Careless Driving. The DWI was dismissed. The implied consent license revocation was also reversed, by Order of the Court, and client was eligible for a refund of the $680 driver’s license reinstatement fee.
Client was accused of having fallen asleep at a stop light, and charged with DWI after providing a positive blood test showing the presence of a controlled substance in his body. Attorney Calvin Johnson argued that because the implied consent statute was invoked, it should be followed. Because the implied consent statute prevents a test from being taken if a person refuses, when the officer also obtained a search warrant, the officer denied our client his right to refuse. The matter did not require a litigated pretrial hearing. We negotiated a plea to a Careless Driving. The DWI was dismissed. Client maintained a valid license, as there was no DWI conviction or implied consent license revocation.
Client successfully argued for a Stay of Imposition of Sentence, after the Court had previously imposed a Stay of Execution of a prison sentence.
This means that the client now has the opportunity to exit probation with a misdemeanor on his record, and not a felony.
This will hopefully improve future employment options and opportunities.
The words of the Court are instructive and demonstrate one of the main reasons why I enjoy practicing law:
Minn. R. Crim. P. 27.03, subd. 9, allows the district court to modify a sentence during a stay of execution or imposition of sentence so long as it does not increase the period of confinement. Such a modification is within the discretion of the district court. State v. Hockensmith, 417 N.W.2d 630, 633 (Minn.1988). The district court “sits with a unique perspective on all stages of a case, including sentencing,” and is uniquely well-suited to evaluate an offender’s conduct and weigh its sentencing options. State v. Hough, 585 N.W.2d 393, 397 (Minn. 1998). The parties agree that the relief requested by Defendant is extraordinary and should not be granted lightly.
The Court understands the State’s concerns that modification of Defendant’s sentence may set a precedent for other defendants and, in particular, other successful Drug Court graduates. However, the Court believes that Defendant’s conduct following his conviction has been exceptional and exemplifies the mission of Drug Court to reduce crime through the rehabilitation and recovery of drug and alcohol offenders. Defendant’s achievements following his conviction epitomize the success that someone who commits to Drug Court can have in breaking the cycle of substance abuse, addiction, and crime. Based on comments from his probation officer and this Court’s own observation of Defendant’s successes in Drug Court, Defendant is a unique individual who has taken all of the opportunities given to him to truly rehabilitate himself and become a contributing member of society. While Defendant is not the only person to successfully complete Drug Court, he does appear particularly committed to continue his education and ultimately give back to society.
Based on the support for Defendant’s request from his probation agent and the particular circumstances of this case, it is appropriate to modify Defendant’s sentence from a stay of execution to a stay of imposition.
Client pleaded guilty by default to No Insurance and Failure to Transfer Title for the motor vehicle. Without fully knowing, he paid the fines when he was arrested on a warrant that he did not know existed. As a result of the conviction, client found it nearly impossible to find insurance. By way of a motion and proposed order for the Court and Prosecutor’s review and approval, our team was able to achieve an agreement to Vacate the Conviction and enter a stay of adjudication. The Court approved, and the conviction was removed from client’s record, without the need for a single court appearance.
Client was charged with 3rd Degree DWI, a Gross Misdemeanor (with 3 prior DWIs on record, all outside of 10 years). The test result obtained was greater than .20. The motor vehicle (a snow mobile) was subject to forfeiture, based on client’s cancelled license status. However, it was determined that a person cannot be charged with Driving After Cancellation/Inimical to Public Safety (DAC/IPS) for driving a motor vehicle that does not require a driver’s license to operate. Consequently, the DAC/IPS charge was dismissed, the vehicle was returned to client free and clear, and the DWI was negotiated down to a misdemeanor, with no jail.
1st Degree Drug Charges Reduced, no adjudication of guilt – Client was charged with four counts of 1st Degree Drug Sales and Possession. Our criminal defense attorneys negotiated a settlement for a Discharge and Dismissal on an amended charge of 5th Degree Aiding and Abetting Drug Possession. In other words, the court did not accept the plea of guilty, and there is no criminal conviction. Upon successful completion of probation, the matter will be dismissed, and client’s record will remain clear.
Gross misdemeanor dismissed – charge reduced, no probation. Client was charged with Gross Misdemeanor Violation of Restricted License. We negotiated for the charge to be reduced to a petty misdemeanor ("not a crime" and no probation). The client paid a minimal fine and the matter was resolved.
DWI Dismissed – Stay of Adjudication on Careless Driving – Client was charged with 4th Degree DWI. We negotiated a Stay of Adjudication on a Careless Driving. In other words, the conviction was not reported for insurance purposes. Consequently, client was saved from paying significant insurance costs. The DWI was dismissed.
Multiple Assault Charges Dismissed – Client was charged with two counts of Domestic Assault, as well as felony level charges of 2nd Degree Assault and Terroristic Threats. Our attorneys were able to negotiate a reduced charge of Disorderly Conduct. All assault charges were dismissed. Client was placed on minimal, unsupervised probation, for one year.