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Taylor v. State

Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals

June 1, 2018

John Taylor
v.
State of Alabama

          Appeal from Baldwin Circuit Court (CC-11-1057.72)

         On Return to Remand

          JOINER, JUDGE.

         John Taylor appeals the October 2017 revocation of his probation. On May 5, 2012, Taylor was convicted of first-degree sexual abuse, see § 13A-6-66, Ala. Code 1975, and was sentenced to serve 10 years' imprisonment; that sentence was split and Taylor was ordered to serve 1 year and 1 day followed by 3 years' supervised probation. Taylor was alleged to be delinquent in his probation for violating the residency requirements of the Alabama Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act, § 15-20A-1 et seq., Ala. Code 1975 ("SORNA"), see § 15-20A-11, Ala. Code 1975.

         Facts and Procedural History

         On April 23, 2015, Taylor's probation officer, Kyle Callaghan, filed a delinquency report recommending the revocation of Taylor's probation. The delinquency report alleged:

"On April 19, 2015, Mobile County Sheriff's Office, Sgt. Daniel Webster received an anonymous phone call advising him that Taylor was intoxicated and was making sexual advances to a 14 year old female that was at the residence Taylor's [sic] was temporarily staying. The informant was making a phone call to Sgt. Webster on behalf of the victim's mother, who resided next door. Sgt. Webster responded to the resident [sic] and placed Taylor under arrest for violation of the Alabama Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act, Alabama Code 15-20A-11, Residency Restrictions. Taylor was transported to the Mobile County Metro Jail where [he] sits at this time."

(Record on Return to Remand, C. 11-12.)

         On September 27, 2017, Taylor appeared with counsel at a probation-revocation hearing. At that hearing, Taylor's counsel admitted that Taylor had violated his probation and that Taylor had pleaded guilty to the SORNA violation. Taylor's counsel noted that Taylor was arrested in April 2015 and stated: "[W]e're just asking for mercy on that being it's two years old and he has [already completed] the full sentence ... on the new charge that's the basis of the revocation." (Record on Return to Remand, R. 4.) The State requested that Taylor's probation be revoked because Taylor had pleaded guilty to the SORNA charge. The circuit court sua sponte continued Taylor's hearing because Taylor's defense counsel had been appointed on the day of the hearing, because the State could not explain why the revocation hearing had not been scheduled until more than two years after the violation had occurred, and because the amount of time remaining on Taylor's term of probation was unknown.

         On October 11, 2017, Taylor appeared with counsel for the continued probation-revocation hearing. The State and Taylor stipulated to continuing Taylor's probation for an additional year. The following discussion occurred:

"THE COURT: I'm going to--here's--I'm going to explain why because it needs to be said. SORNA violations where you're just not doing what I have instructed you to do and what the law requires you to is one thing, meaning you don't report to the sheriff's office or on your birthday or whatever they have you do. The new case is alleging that you got intoxicated and then were making sexual advances to a 14-year-old and--
"THE DEFENDANT: Your Honor, if I may ask, the report that's being read here was something I pled not guilty to. That would be another charge, Your Honor. That would be a sexual harassment. What I'm pleading out to, Your Honor, the detective authorized me to be there for a week because I had a heart attack. During that week, he came and arrested me for being there because there was allegedly an 11-year-old child staying there. Now, I had made prearrangement for the child to stay with her--and her grandfather to stay at another residence during that week. And that was the situation, Your Honor. This report he is reading was something that was thrown out of court for me to plead guilty to the SORNA.
"THE COURT: All right. Don't interrupt me again.
"THE DEFENDANT: Yes, sir.
"THE COURT: This original case started by sexual--submitting another person to sexual contact by forcible compulsion and a child less than 12 years of age. It is alleged that you had contact as an intoxicated person making sexual advances to a 14-year-old, plus you got the SORNA charge, plus you pled guilty to it. So I'm revoking your probation in full and ordering you to serve the original 10 years minus any time you've been held on this case or any split sentence that you were originally given."

(R. 7-8.)

         Following the hearing, the circuit court issued the ...


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