Ramsey County District Court File No. 62-CR-12-1788
Lori Swanson, Attorney General, St. Paul, Minnesota; and John J. Choi, Ramsey County Attorney, Thomas R. Ragatz, Assistant County Attorney, St. Paul, Minnesota (for respondent).
David W. Merchant, Chief Appellate Public Defender, F. Richard Gallo, Jr., Assistant Public Defender, St. Paul, Minnesota (for appellant).
Considered and decided by Cleary, Presiding Judge; Hooten, Judge; and Huspeni, Judge. [*]
Appellant pleaded guilty to the offense of simple robbery and received a sentence of a stayed 48-month commitment, ten years of probation, and 160 days in the Ramsey County Correctional Facility (workhouse). On appeal, appellant argues that he is entitled to modification of his sentence or withdrawal of his guilty plea because his plea was induced by a promise regarding his sentence that was not fulfilled. We reverse and remand.
In March 2012, appellant was charged with one count of simple robbery due to alleged actions against a female acquaintance. Appellant waived his right to be represented by an attorney in the matter and proceeded pro se.
In May 2012, appellant met with the prosecutor in the case immediately prior to a court hearing, and appellant and the prosecutor reached an agreement that appellant would plead guilty to the charge. The prosecutor filled out a plea petition, and appellant signed the petition. The plea petition states: "If I plead guilty as charged, the prosecutor will agree to a departure from the sentencing guidelines and a sentence of 160 days in the [workhouse]."
At the beginning of the hearing, the district court and appellant discussed the plea agreement.
COURT: . . . I understand there's been an offer that you'd like to take advantage of. Is that correct? APPELLANT: Yes, ma'am.
COURT: And tell me what the offer was. APPELLANT: The offer is 160 days ...