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Pope v. State

Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals

August 16, 2019

Raymond Lee POPE,
v.
STATE of Alabama.

         Rehearing Denied October 25, 2019.

         Appeal from DeKalb Circuit Court (CC-10-812.70; CC-10-813.70; CC-10-826.70)

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[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

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          James Anthony Jennings, Jr., Fort Payne, for appellant.

          Steve Marshall, atty. gen., and Jack W. Willis, asst. atty. gen., for appellee.

         McCOOL, Judge.

         Raymond Lee Pope appeals the circuit court's judgment revoking his community-corrections sentence and ordering him to serve his sentence in incarceration. For the reasons set forth herein, we affirm.

         Facts and Procedural History

         As best we can determine from the limited record before us, it appears that Pope pleaded guilty in April 2013 to second-degree unlawful manufacture of a controlled substance, a violation of § 13A-12-217, Ala. Code 1975; unlawful possession of a controlled substance, a violation of § 13A-12-212, Ala. Code 1975; and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia, a violation of § 13A-12-260, Ala. Code 1975. The circuit court sentenced Pope to 20 years' imprisonment for the manufacturing conviction, 20 years' imprisonment for the possession-of-a-controlled-substance conviction, and 12 months in the county jail for the possession-of-drug-paraphernalia conviction, the sentences to be served concurrently. The circuit court ordered Pope to serve his sentences in the DeKalb County community-corrections program, and, as a condition of his participation in the community-corrections program, Pope was required to "[t]otally abstain from the consumption of alcoholic beverages and controlled substances" and to "[s]ubmit to substance abuse tests [at the court-referral office (`the CRO')] when ordered to do so." (C. 35.)

         The following procedural history is undisputed. In September 2013 and November 2014, Pope's urine sample tested positive for amphetamines, and Pope was sanctioned with jail time for each failed test. In April 2015, Pope's urine sample tested positive for alcohol, which Pope admitted to consuming, and the circuit court ordered Pope to serve 60 days in jail.

         Between July 2015 and June 2016, Pope's urine sample tested positive for amphetamines on four separate occasions. On each occasion, Pope denied using amphetamines and requested a confirmation test from Laboratory Corporation of America ("LabCorp"), and each time the test results were "sent out for confirmation" and "came back negative." (C. 8.)

         In January 2017, Pope's urine sample tested positive for amphetamines, and Pope again denied using amphetamines and requested a confirmation test from LabCorp, which "returned [positive] for Meth." (C. 9.) Although Pope's community-corrections sentence was set for revocation at that time because he had failed four urine screens, the State agreed to allow Pope to enter a substance-abuse program instead of revoking his community-corrections sentence. Pope attended the substance-abuse program and subsequently returned to the community-corrections

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program, but between July 2017 and February 2018, Pope's urine sample tested positive for amphetamines on three separate occasions. However, on each occasion Pope denied using amphetamines and requested a confirmation test from LabCorp, and each time the confirmation test was negative. According to Pope, "[i]n a meeting on March 9, 2018, to discuss this series of false-positive results, the `drug court team' decided to perform a hair ...


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