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Cress v. State

Court of Appeals of Minnesota

August 12, 2013

Angelina Cress, petitioner, Appellant,
v.
State of Minnesota, Respondent.

UNPUBLISHED OPINION

Ramsey County District Court File No. 62-K3-06-000717.

Kirk M. Anderson, Anderson Law Firm, PLLC, Minneapolis, Minnesota (for appellant)

Lori Swanson, Attorney General, St. Paul, Minnesota; and John L. Choi, Ramsey County Attorney, Peter R. Marker, Assistant County Attorney, St. Paul, Minnesota (for respondent)

Considered and decided by Rodenberg, Presiding Judge; Stoneburner, Judge; and Connolly, Judge.

RODENBERG, Judge

Appellant challenges the district court's denial of her petition for postconviction relief and her motion to modify her sentence. We affirm.

FACTS

Appellant Angelina Cress is a citizen of the Marshall Islands and has lived in the United States since 1979 when she was eight years old. Appellant has three children who are United States citizens.

On February 12, 2006, appellant was arrested at a Ramsey County Wal-Mart store after she attempted to purchase items valued at $113.28 with a forged check.[1] On March 29, appellant pleaded guilty to felony check forgery in violation of Minn. Stat. § 609.631, subds. 3, 4(3)(b) (2004). Prior to entering the guilty plea in open court, and while represented by a public defender, appellant submitted a signed petition to plead guilty to the district court. The petition included the following language:

I have been told by my attorney and I understand . . . [t]hat if I am not a citizen of the United States, my plea of guilty to this crime may result in deportation, exclusion from admission to the United States or denial of naturalization as a United States citizen.

Appellant did not appear for sentencing as scheduled on July 17, 2006, and the district court issued a warrant for her arrest. Appellant was arrested and sentenced to one year and one day in prison (366 days). The district court stayed execution of appellant's sentence and placed appellant on probation for up to five years, with probationary conditions not relevant to this appeal. Appellant did not appeal her conviction or sentence. Appellant complied with the terms of her probation and was discharged from probation on August 5, 2009.

In 2012, federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement initiated removal proceedings against appellant based upon the check-forgery conviction. Appellant was scheduled to appear before an immigration law judge in November 2012.

On March 30, 2012, appellant filed a petition for postconviction relief under Minn. Stat. §§ 590.01–.10 (2010). Relying on Padilla v. Kentucky, 559 U.S. 356, 130 S.Ct. 1473 (2010), appellant argued that she had been ineffectively represented by counsel when counsel failed to specifically advise appellant of the "clear immigration consequences" of her 2006 guilty plea. Appellant also argued that the district court failed to establish an adequate factual basis for her guilty plea. The district court granted respondent's motion to stay the postconviction proceeding pending the Minnesota Supreme Court's decision in Campos v. State, 816 N.W.2d 480 (Minn. 2012), which was expected to address the issue of retroactive application of Padilla. On May 7, 2012, appellant filed a notice of appeal from the order staying her petition for postconviction relief. On May 17, appellant moved the district court for reduction of her sentence from one year and one day to 364 days so as to render her conviction a gross misdemeanor under Minn. Stat. § 609.03 (2) (2004). On June 20, the Minnesota Supreme Court issued its decision in Campos, holding that Padilla does not apply retroactively to ...


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