Saturday, April 25, 2015

What does it take to get locked up in Hinds County? (Updated)

Update: Mr. Davis currently faces not one, not two, not three, not four, not five, not six, not seven, not eight but NINE counts of auto burglary from Raymond PD.  His bond is $10,000 each for eight charges but no bond for one charge.    Will Robert Schuler Smith, Tomie Green, and Michelle Purvis finally agree that this guy is actually a habitual criminal?
 
Original post on April 24: When does habitual mean habitual in the Hinds County criminal justice  system?  Meet Woodrez T. Davis.  9-time felon. His first felony conviction took place in 1999.  He was granted parole and released from the custody of MDOC on January 2015.  Despite a record of eight felony convictions, Hinds County prosecutors agreed to drop the "habitual offender" designation in a plea bargain with Davis in March 2014.    He is currently a suspect in several burglaries in the Clinton area.  He is currently in jail for four charges of auto burglary in Hinds County. 





A Hinds County grand jury indicted Davis for possessing and receiving stolen property in January 2013.  The indictment listed these felony convictions:

shoplifting (1996)
receiving stolen goods (1999)
felon with a firearm (1999)
vehicle burglary (2001)
vehicle burglary (2001)
vehicle burglary (2001)
receiving stolen goods (2010)
receiving stolen goods (2010)
receiving stolen goods (2010)

However, the District Attorney's office agreed to drop habitual status for Davis.  The prosecutor also agreed not to revoke his probation for his 2010 conviction.    Davis would have been sentenced to the maximum sentence and had to serve day for day of the sentence if he was convicted as a habitual offender.*  Oddly enough, Judge Melvin Priester, Sr. only gave him a $5,000 bond for this crime while Judge  Tomie Green gave him a $15,000 bond for his 2010 indictment.


 
Kingfish note: That was the news, now for the opinion.  Nothing like some criminal collusion between Hinds County prosecutors, Hinds County public defenders, and Hinds County judges.  Maybe not criminal in law but definitely criminal in spirit and criminal in the dereliction of duty to protect the public.  Mr. Davis is the poster boy for all that is wrong with the Hinds County criminal justice system.  People get tired of being terrorized by criminals like Mr. Davis and move to other counties where they don't tolerate this type of crime.  Michael Guest would have slapped that habitual offender status on Davis if he was prosecuted in Rankin or Madison counties.  There would be no committing crimes or being in jail within a few months after parole because he would still be in jail.



*Mississippi Code 97-17-70

(4) Any person who shall be convicted of receiving stolen property which exceeds One Thousand Dollars ($ 1,000.00) or more, but less than Five Thousand Dollars ($ 5,000.00) in value shall be punished by imprisonment in the custody of the State Department of Corrections for a term not exceeding five (5) years or by a fine of not more than Ten Thousand Dollars ($ 10,000.00), or both.

(5) Any person who shall be convicted of receiving stolen property which exceeds Five Thousand Dollars ($ 5,000.00) or more but less than Twenty-five Thousand Dollars ($ 25,000.00) in value shall be punished by imprisonment in the custody of the State Department of Corrections for a term not exceeding ten (10) years or by a fine of not more than Ten Thousand Dollars ($ 10,000.00), or both.

(6) Any person who shall be convicted of receiving stolen property which exceeds Twenty-five Thousand Dollars ($ 25,000.00) in value shall be punished by imprisonment in the custody of the State Department of Corrections for a term not exceeding twenty (20) years or by a fine of not more than Ten Thousand Dollars ($ 10,000.00), or both.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

They did the same thing with serial con man Demario Walker. He was indicted as an habitual. Hinds pleaded him out to time served. As soon as he was out he was on facebook with photos of all the money he was scamming out of people. Now he's locked up in Alabama. The DA sucks.

Anonymous said...

Too bad he never came up on trial in front of Judge Weill :-)

Anonymous said...

I am thankful I live/work in Rankin County....The Medical Community is leaving Hinds County as there is fear if any malpractice suits arise they will not stand a chance with a Hinds County Jury.

Anonymous said...

Very few med-mals filed in Mississippi since Tort Reform became the law. The Medical Corridor will extend into Rankin County, but the idea is to work as one team not several factions known as counties.
Re: This Story. Are people beginning to see a pattern here of how some work the judicial system and the judges who let them do it. Agree with 1:48's last statement.

Anonymous said...

3:22 your comment was very timely, in 2002.

Anonymous said...

I'm sad to say this is the rule rather than the exception when dealing with habitual offenders in Hinds county. The prosecutors would rather take the easy way out by dropping the habitual tag and pleading the defendant than actually taking them to trial and getting them the sentence that they have EARNED according to the law. If they are convicted by a jury then the judge has no discretion and must give them the maximum sentence. It all starts with a DA willing to go to trial and do his job. We just don't have such a DA in Hinds county.

Anonymous said...

It's not Michelle Purvis' job to agree the guy is a habitual. All the DA needs to prove it is the pen pack but it is Purvis' job to hold the DA to his burden of proof.

Anonymous said...

5:16pm
Is Purvis too busy fighting with judge Weill to care about prosecuting this guy and others criminals? Priorities!

Saltwaterpappy said...

I'm just thankful that I could escape from Jackson and Hinds County back in 1980. Jackson has all of the problems of New Orleans, but none of the charm.

Anonymous said...

as long as Tommie green is on the bench in hinds county there will be NO justice for the criminals in hinds county. Now, Hinds county has a new racist on the bench in Stokes' wife......stay tuned

Anonymous said...

It's Smith's job to prosecute. Not Purvis'. This ignorance explains a lot.

Anonymous said...

If they are convicted by a jury then the judge has no discretion and must give them the maximum sentence.

That is the nub of the wink, wink agreement between Smith and Tomie Green. Hinds is corrupt to the core.

Anonymous said...

In what galaxy would Mr. Davis' own attorney "agree that this guy is a habitual offender"?

There's paper law; there's internet blogging law; and then there's actually representing a client's best interest. The blame is not with his lawyer for working out what is best for his/her client, but with the District Attorney for allowing assistants to dispose of cases in that way.

KF has a fundamental misunderstanding of the adversarial system with which our system of government works. The public defender's office, and defense attorneys in general, are NOT cogs in a wheel, nor are they an extension of the government. Defense attorneys owe a duty to one person: the client.

Kingfish said...

I have a perfect understanding of such law. I expect Purvis and her attorneys to get the best possible deals they can for their clients. That is their ethical duty as lawyers.

However, it is another matter altogether to have the D.A. and his prosecutors go along with them as their bitch and the judges to sign off on this crap when someone has eight damn felony convictions and IS a habitual offender. Thus the public defender makes the offer to drop the habitual status and the DA and Judge go along with it.


I'm sure the families who were robbed in Raymond will appreciate your comment.

Anonymous said...

8:24 AM...Your logic is what gives many of us the opinion we have of defense attorneys. How are we supposed to believe that you guys value common sense and the common good of our society when your life's work revolves around finding technicalities that had little to no impact in the grand scheme of committing the charged crime?

Furthermore, the adversarial system only worked when trials were speedy and punishments were strict. If this guy had been a horse thief in the 1880's, justice would've been served much more quickly. Many of us prefer the system still worked that way....do you?

Anonymous said...

KF, there is no system where defense attorneys "make the offer." My problem with the opening section of your original story places the onus on the defense attorneys to agree that a client is a habitual offender. You have obviously never dealt with any of the criminal justice system from the inside because you would know that prosecutors make offers. And they're not "offers" but are actually "recommendations regarding sentencing"

Any judge has the power to reject a recommendation from a DA or ADA. Nothing forces them to sentence according to the recommendation.

And I have no idea what the last comment about "the familes in Raymond" has anything to do with my point. If someone does not understand the role that each party plays in the criminal justice system, I fail to see where blame can be placed on an attorney whose job is to advocate for their client.

Blame the system...the judges...the DA as much as you'd like. But to blame a defense attorney for representing thier client is ludicrous.

And @10:07, a defense attorney cannot serve a client and "the common sense and common good of our society" at the same time. You're confusing a defense attorney with something altogether different. And as much you like to believe it's a "technicality", I believe it's actually called a "Constitution" and is the supreme law of the land. Everyone is required to play by the same rules. And yes, it really is that simple.

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