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Troy MI License Restoration Blog

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

DELAYED SENTENCING: ARE YOU WORTHY OF DISMISSAL

Way back in 1927 the Michigan legislature enacted a law that acknowledged the fact that good people sometimes, inexplicably, do bad things. And, regarding the people that find themselves in these types of situations, MCL771.1 provides that if you have committed a felony or misdemeanor, with some exceptions (excluded from this relief are felonies such as murder, treason, criminal sexual conduct in the 1st or 3rd degree, armed robbery or major controlled substance violations) the court MAY decide that if a defendant has entered a plea of guilty or by verdict has been found guilty and it appears that the defendant will not engage in the behavior again, and, that the public good does not require the person suffer the penalties imposed by law, then the Judge may order the defendant to probation and be supervised by a probation officer.

Pursuant to this probation, the Judge may also order that the actual sentencing of the defendant be delayed for not more than a year. This time period is used by the courts to enable the defendant, if needed, to participate in counseling for whatever issues that need  it. (eg. drug counseling, anger management, impulse control, etc.).

Many times however the Judge merely orders the defendant to stay out of trouble during this probationary period and to return to court on the deferred date to be sentenced.

Now as you can imagine, prosecutors do not like this statute! Many conservative Judges do not like this statute (presumably because they do not want to look weak on crime - remember that they are "elected" officials). In light of these facts, in general, you can further imagine that the facts of your particular case better fit the statute.

In other words, you had better be worthy. What's that you ask?!? Well, lets start with the hope that we can sell this extraordinary relief to a prosecutor and Judge on the basis that the criminal behavior is "isolated" in nature and that it is not likely that the client will engage in such behavior again. Obviously this is possible only if the client does not have prior convictions on his/her record of a similar nature.

Further, if the facts of the case are particularly repulsive or offensive to the prosecutor's/Judges sensibilities, we will be confronted with more of an uphill battle. Remember, this relief is discretionary.

The best chances for relief under this statute is to be able to  show that the client is an exemplary member of society, with many life achievements to point to. Some examples are long term marriage, long term employment/good job (Judges love to imagine everybody paying taxes, after all, how do you think they get paid?), raising a family, putting children through school/college and mostly, not having any type of prior criminal history.

The art of persuasion is paramount here. Attorneys must be willing to go the extra mile to posture their client to be in the best position possible to be granted this relief. This takes work not only on the Attorneys part but also the clients. The client must be willing to follow their Attorney's direction and do what it takes. They must be proactive.

If you have been charged with a crime and care about keeping your criminal record clean, and it does matter, then call the Law Offices of Martin Lievois in Troy at 248-419-1556 or in Flint at 810-250-4550.

 


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