CALVIN E. BARTLETT
STATE OF TENNESSEE
Assigned on Briefs October 4, 2016
from the Circuit Court for Madison County No. C-16-16 Roy B.
Morgan, Jr., Judge
Calvin E. Bartlett, received an effective ten-year sentence
as the result of a January 2015 plea agreement that disposed
of two felonies and six misdemeanors in two different cases
in the Madison County Criminal Court. Petitioner subsequently
filed a petition for post-conviction relief, alleging that he
received ineffective assistance of counsel and that his
guilty pleas were made unintelligently. The post-conviction
court denied relief, and Petitioner timely appealed. Because
Petitioner failed to prove that he received ineffective
assistance of counsel, the decision of the post-conviction
court is affirmed.
R. App. P. 3 Appeal as of Right; Judgment of the Circuit
T. Howell, Jackson, Tennessee, for the appellant, Calvin E.
Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; Brent
C. Cherry, Assistant Attorney General, Senior Counsel; Jerry
Woodall, District Attorney General; and Al Earls, Assistant
District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of
Timothy L. Easter, J., delivered the opinion of the court, in
which Alan E. Glenn and Camille R. McMullen, JJ., joined.
TIMOTHY L. EASTER, JUDGE.
was indicted by the Madison County Grand Jury in case number
12-69 for aggravated assault, possession of a handgun by a
convicted felon, tampering with evidence, aggravated
burglary, theft over of property valued over $1000, cruelty
to animals, and vandalism over $500. In case number 12-70,
Petitioner was indicted for aggravated burglary, theft of
property valued over $1000, vandalism under $500 and
January 9, 2015, Petitioner pled guilty to the reduced
charges of simple assault, aggravated criminal trespass,
theft of property valued under $500, and vandalism in Case
No. 12-69. Petitioner also pled guilty to aggravated
burglary, theft of property valued over $1000, vandalism, and
resisting arrest in Case No. 12-70. In exchange for
Petitioner's plea, the agreement established that
Petitioner would be sentenced as a Range II offender and that
all sentences in both cases would run concurrently for an
effective sentence of ten years to serve. All other charges
were dismissed as part of the plea agreement.
January 21, 2016, Defendant filed a pro se petition for
post-conviction relief, followed by four amended petitions
with the assistance of appointed counsel, all alleging that
he received ineffective assistance of trial counsel and that
his guilty pleas were made unintelligently.
evidentiary hearing on the petition, Petitioner testified
that he requested copies of the discovery from trial counsel
but did not receive any. Petitioner maintained that had the
discovery been provided, the outcome of his case would have
been "a lot different" because he "would have
had something to work by." Petitioner also testified
that he requested to meet with trial counsel to discuss the
charges in the indictment and the discovery, but trial
counsel did "not really" meet with Petitioner.
Petitioner intended to go to trial in Case No. 12-69, but
trial counsel told him that he had to plead guilty in both
cases or else the State would not approve of a plea
agreement. Petitioner testified that he felt that he had no
other choice but to plead guilty because trial counsel was
not ready for trial. During cross-examination, Petitioner
admitted that, before he pled guilty, he had a criminal
record of two felony convictions and several misdemeanors.
However, Petitioner contended that trial counsel did not
argue for a lesser sentence based on relevant mitigating
factors, such as the non-violent nature of the crimes and his
counsel testified that he defended some pro se pre-trial
motions filed by Petitioner and filed a motion for discovery.
The prosecutor's office followed an open-file policy and
permitted trial counsel access to everything within the case
file. Trial counsel reviewed the discovery material with
Petitioner and discussed the plea negotiations with him.
Trial counsel recalled that the case was "pretty
straightforward" and discussed potential defenses with
Petitioner. Trial counsel testified that he would have been
prepared to litigate the case by the time the trial date
the hearing, the post-conviction court entered an order
denying post-conviction relief. Petitioner timely appealed to
this Court. He argues that the post- conviction court erred
by denying his petition for post-conviction relief because
the evidence presented at the evidentiary hearing established
that trial counsel was ineffective for 1) failing to object
to Petitioner's classification as a Range II offender, 2)
failing to provide Petitioner with complete discovery, 3)
failing to adequately meet with Petitioner, and 4) failing to