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State v. Redden

Superior Court of Delaware, New Castle

February 16, 2015

STATE OF DELAWARE,
v.
DARRELL T. REDDEN

Submitted December 9, 2014

Page 603

Joseph S. Grubb, Esquire, Deputy Attorney General, Department of Justice, Wilmington, Delaware, for the State of Delaware.

Michael W. Modica, Esquire, Wilmington, Delaware, for Defendant Darrell T. Redden.

OPINION

Page 604

Paul R. Wallace, Judge.

I. Introduction

Before the Court is Defendant, Darrell T. Redden's, motion for sentence reduction and modification. Redden was sentenced on June 6, 2011 and now, for the second time, asks the Court to reduce the length of his imprisonment. He also, for the first time, seeks modification of his term of partial confinement. Because Redden's application to reduce his sentence of imprisonment is procedurally barred, it must be DENIED. And after review of the merits of his lone viable claim, the Court, exercising its discretion under Rule 35(b), DENIES Redden's request for modification of the conditions of his term of partial confinement.

II. Factual and Procedural Background[1]

In late January 2011, Darrell T. Redden's car was stopped by the police for traffic violations. Redden gave the police officer a false name (his brother's), and was detained while the officer tried to confirm his actual identity. When searched, Redden was found to have $2,500 cash on him and a digital scale in his boot. Though no actual drugs were found therein, a drug-sniffing dog " hit" on Redden's car. Redden was arrested and made bail.

Page 605

Law enforcement meanwhile continued investigating Redden, suspecting that he was engaged in illegal drug sales. A baggie with cocaine residue was discovered during a " trash pull" of discarded garbage at Redden's home. A later search of his residence yielded a loaded semi-automatic handgun. Redden, a person prohibited due to previous felony convictions, was arrested for the illegal possession of this weapon. At the time, he had pending drug charges and was pending a hearing for violating the terms of probated sentences previously imposed in other matters.

Redden pleaded guilty on June 6, 2011 to Possession of Ammunition by a Person Prohibited and Maintaining a Vehicle for Keeping a Controlled Substance. He was sentenced that same day to serve: Possession of Ammunition by a Person Prohibited -- eight years at Level V suspended after serving three years for five years at Level IV (Home Confinement or Halfway House) suspended after serving six months at Level IV for 18 months of Level III; and Maintaining a Vehicle -- three years at Level V suspended for 18 months of Level III.[2]

On April 13, 2012, Redden docketed his first motion under Superior Court Criminal Rule 35(b) requesting reduction of this Level V term. This relief was appropriate, he urged, because: (1) he was " misguided" and " wrongly informed" by his counsel; (2) his sentence exceeded SENTAC guidelines; and (3) given the guidelines and his VOP sentence, his sentence was " a bit harsh" -- he " was sentenced too severely." [3] The Court considered Redden's application under the provisions of Criminal Rule 35(b),[4] Redden's " presentence report/prior record, and the sentence imposed upon [him]." [5] The Court denied Redden's motion because: (1) it " was filed more than 90 days after the imposition of [his] sentence and [wa]s, therefore, time-barred" ; (2) the Court " d[id] not find the existence of any extraordinary circumstances" to overcome the 90-day time limitation; and (3) the Court found the sentence " is appropriate for all the reasons stated at the time of ...


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