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Booker Timothy Hodges, Petitioner v. State of Minnesota

April 22, 2013

BOOKER TIMOTHY HODGES, PETITIONER, APPELLANT,
v.
STATE OF MINNESOTA, RESPONDENT.



Ramsey County District Court File No. 62-K9-06-004674

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Rodenberg, Judge

This opinion will be unpublished and may not be cited except as provided by Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (2012).

Affirmed

Considered and decided by Larkin, Presiding Judge; Halbrooks, Judge; and Rodenberg, Judge.

UNPUBLISHED OPINION RODENBERG, Judge

Appellant challenges the district court's order denying a Minn. R. Crim. P. 27.03, subd. 9, motion to correct the minimum term of imprisonment imposed as part of appellant's mandatory life sentence. Appellant argues that his 240-month minimum term of imprisonment is not authorized by law because it exceeds the statutory maximum of 180 months applicable to the offense of conviction in the absence of the mandatory life sentence. Appellant also argues that his constitutional rights were violated because he received ineffective assistance of counsel. We affirm.

FACTS

In 2007, appellant Booker Timothy Hodges pleaded guilty to third-degree criminal sexual conduct. Because of his prior sex-offense convictions and consistent with the plea agreement, appellant received a mandatory life sentence under Minn. Stat. § 609.3455, subd. 4(a)(1) (2006), with a 240-month minimum term of imprisonment imposed pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 609.3455, subd. 5. The district court found that, if it was required to apply the sentencing guidelines in calculating the minimum term of imprisonment, aggravating circumstances would justify an upward durational departure from the presumptive sentence to arrive at a 240-month minimum term of imprisonment.

Appellant directly appealed his sentence. State v. Hodges (Hodges I), 757 N.W.2d 693, 695, 697 (Minn. App. 2008), aff'd on other grounds,784 N.W.2d 827 (Minn. 2009). This court affirmed the sentence while holding that the minimum term of imprisonment must be equal to at least the sentence arrived at by application of the sentencing guidelines. Id. at 696, 698. The supreme court affirmed, holding that the minimum term of imprisonment must be calculated according to the same sentencing procedures that would be followed absent the mandatory life sentence. State v. Hodges (Hodges II), 784 N.W.2d 827, 833--34 (Minn. 2009). The supreme court concluded that the district court properly determined that aggravating factors supported an upward durational departure under the sentencing guidelines and was "satisfied that the aggravating factors found by the district court [were] sufficiently severe to justify the imposition of a minimum term of imprisonment amounting to a slightly greater-than-double-durational sentence." Id.

Appellant subsequently filed a pro se petition for post-conviction relief. The district court denied his petition. Appellant appealed, but then voluntarily dismissed his appeal.

In July 2012, appellant brought a Minn. R. Crim. P. 27.03, subd. 9, motion to correct his sentence to reduce his minimum term of imprisonment from 240 months to the 180-month statutory maximum sentence that would apply to a third-degree criminal sexual conduct conviction in the absence of the mandatory life sentence. The district court denied the motion.

The present appeal is from the district court's denial of appellant's Minn. R. Crim. P. 27.03, subd. 9, motion.

DECISION

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