Court of Criminal Appeals of Tennessee, Nashville
Session Date March 11, 2015
Appeal from the Criminal Court for Davidson County No. 2009-I-833 Steve R. Dozier, Judge
Karen McDonald, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Dusty Ross Binkley.
Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; Clark B. Thornton, Senior Counsel; Victor S. Johnson III, District Attorney General; and Pamela Sue Anderson, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.
Roger A. Page, J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which James Curwood Witt, Jr., and Camille R. McMullen, JJ., joined.
ROGER A. PAGE, JUDGE
In a prior opinion denying appellant's petition for writ of habeas corpus, this court summarized the procedural history of appellant's case as follows:
On July 2, 2009, the Petitioner entered guilty pleas to two offenses in Davidson County Criminal Court: manufacture of methamphetamine and possession of a firearm in the commission of a dangerous felony. Per the plea agreement, the Petitioner agreed to be sentenced as a standard offender with a thirty percent release eligibility, and the trial court imposed an eight-year sentence on the methamphetamine charge and a one-year sentence on the weapon charge, to be served concurrently. The trial court ordered the Petitioner to serve the eight-year sentence on community corrections.
The Petitioner was subsequently arrested for assault in Williamson County in November of 2009, upon which the Davidson County Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant alleging a violation of the terms of the Petitioner's community corrections sentence. An amended judgment was entered on December 18, 2009[, ] in the Davidson County Criminal Court, reinstating the Petitioner to community corrections.
The Petitioner was again arrested in Williamson County in January of 2010, and he pled guilty in Williamson County Criminal Court on June 1, 2010[, ] to one count of false imprisonment, one count of aggravated assault, and one count of vandalism. Pursuant to a plea agreement, the trial court imposed an eight-year sentence to run concurrently with the Petitioner's sentence in the Davidson County Criminal Court.
On July 9, 2010, the Davidson County Criminal Court revoked the Petitioner's community corrections sentence and ordered the Petitioner to serve his remaining sentence in prison, granting the Petitioner jail credit for his time served. The trial court ordered the sentence to run consecutively to the Williamson County Criminal Court sentence.
State v. Dusty Ross Binkley, No. M2013-00164-CCA-R3-HC, slip op. at 2 (Tenn. Crim. App. Sept. 12, 2013). On March 5, 2014, appellant filed a Rule 36.1 motion alleging that the Davidson County trial court incorrectly aligned his Davidson County sentences consecutively to his Williamson County sentences. Specifically, appellant argued that the trial court failed to make findings that justified consecutive sentencing; that appellant did not satisfy any of the seven statutory criteria supporting consecutive sentencing, see Tenn. Code Ann. § 40-35-115(b); that the Davidson County court violated the Community Corrections Act; and that the imposition of consecutive sentences in Davidson County violated appellant's constitutional rights by invalidating his plea to concurrent sentencing in Williamson County. The trial court held a hearing on the motion on March 28, 2014, and denied appellant relief by written order on May 16, 2014.
In 2013, the Tennessee General Assembly promulgated Rule 36.1, which provides, in part:
(a) Either the defendant or the state may, at any time, seek the correction of an illegal sentence by filing a motion to correct an illegal sentence in the trial court in which the judgment of conviction was entered. For purposes of this rule, an illegal sentence is one that is not authorized by ...