I won my first Petition for Post Conviction Relief

Clyde Chalmers v. State of Tennessee
 
Plea and Sentence vacated without evidentiary hearing, and Remanded to Division 8. I was appointed to this for the PPCR and now that the relief has been granted, essentially my obligation to the matter has been fulfilled. The case has been remanded to Division 8, and I have first right to be appointed to the case again. But since this a First Degree murder case, the State may be able to seek the death penalty. Since I’m not death penalty certified yet, I will suggest that Juni Ganguli or James Thomas be appointed and that I be appointed to second chair. But since the State did not seek the death penalty the first time around, it could be considered bad faith to seek it now after the PPCR. So in all likelihood, I’ll be getting my first First Degree Murder case. To summarize Chalmers’ position, the offense occurred in 1989, he was sentenced to life with parole. Today, that sentence would put his release eligible date for parole at 51 years, but in 1989 his RED for parole was 36 years. The death penalty statute has been amended throughout the years, and most attys just assume that before 1995 the RED for parole was 25 years. Normally RED is not part of plea negotiation. But since Chalmers was advised incorrectly of his RED on the record, his plea has been set aside as involuntary. Under Rule 11 of the TRCP, all pleas must be knowing, informed and voluntary. Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

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