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Reynolds v. Lindamood

Court of Criminal Appeals of Tennessee, Nashville

November 7, 2016

WILLIAM REYNOLDS
v.
CHERRY LINDAMOOD, WARDEN

          Assigned on Briefs October 25, 2016 at Knoxville

         Appeal from the Circuit Court for Wayne County No. 15872 Robert L. Jones, Judge

          William Reynolds, Clifton, Tennessee, Pro Se.

          Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; M. Todd Ridley, Assistant Attorney General; Brent Cooper, District Attorney General; and Jonathan Davis, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

          Robert L. Holloway, Jr., J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which James Curwood Witt, Jr., and J. Ross Dyer, JJ., joined.

          OPINION

          ROBERT L. HOLLOWAY, JR., JUDGE

         Factual and Procedural Background

         The Petitioner was indicted on September 10, 2014, by the Giles County Grand Jury. The record on appeal contains only a copy of the back of the indictment which states the Petitioner is indicted for "sale of cocaine, [S]ch[edule] II in an amount of less than .5 grams within a drug[-]free school zone F-C."[1] Pursuant to a negotiated plea agreement, the Petitioner pleaded guilty to sale of cocaine, Schedule II, in an amount of .5 grams or more, a Class B felony, and was sentenced by the trial court to twelve years to be served in the Department of Correction.

         On the judgment of conviction, the "Offender Status" is checked for "Persistent" and the "Release Eligibility" is checked for "Career 60%." Typed in the "Special Conditions" box of the judgment is the following: "Credit for time served. The defendant is agreeing to plea outside the range. It is a total sentence of 12 years to be served as Range III with 60% eligibility[.]" In the same box below the typed comment, the following is handwritten: "A knowing and voluntary plea waives any irregularity as to offender classification or release eligibility. Hicks v. State 945 S.W.2d 706."[2]

         The Petitioner filed a Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus in which he claimed that he was "restrained of his liberty by virtue of a void judgment which is facially invalid because the court lacked jurisdiction to render the judgment because Petitioner's sentence was imposed in direct contravention to T.C.A. § 39-17-417(a)(3) [and] (c)(2)(A)."[3] The State filed a motion to summarily dismiss the petition, and the habeas corpus court granted the motion without a hearing.

         Analysis

         On appeal, the Petitioner presents one issue:

The indictment is insufficient because it charged the [Petitioner] with sale of cocaine, [S]chedule II in an amount less than .5 grams within a drug[-] free school zone rather than sale of cocaine, [S]chedule II in an amount more than [.]5 grams within a drug[-]free school zone.

         The Petitioner claims that the indictment did not put him on notice of the charge against him and that the judgment is void and that the trial court did not have jurisdiction to enter the void judgment. The State claims that the judgment is not void, that the trial court had jurisdiction to enter the ...


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