SUBMITTED: August 21, 2017
Michael W. Modica, Esq., Melanie Withers, Esq.
RICHARD F. STOKES, JUDGE.
the Court is Defendant, Melvin Morse's
("Defendant"), Motion for Modification of
For the reasons expressed below the Motion is
April 11, 2014, Defendant was found guilty of Reckless
Endangering in the First Degree, Reckless Endangering in the
Second Degree, and three counts of Endangering the Welfare of
a Child. Defendant was sentenced as follows: for Reckless
Endangering in the First Degree, five years at Level Five,
suspended after three years for two years at Level Three; for
Reckless Endangering the in Second Degree, one year at Level
Five, suspended for one year at Level Three; and for each of
the three counts of Endangering the Welfare of a Child, one
year at Level Five, suspended for one year at Level Three.
All Level Three time was to be served concurrently.
appealed his conviction to the Delaware Supreme Court. The
Supreme Court affirmed the conviction on August 26, 2015.
October 13, 2015, Defendant filed his first Motion for
Modification of Sentence. On October 27, 2015, the Motion was
denied due to untimeliness.
February 7, 2017, Defendant first filed this, his second,
Motion for Modification of Sentence. Defendant has served all
of his Level Five time, but he seeks to have his remaining
Level Three time either discharged or reduced.
considering a motion under Rule 35, the Court must first
analyze whether any applicable procedural bars
apply. First, the motion must be made within
90 days from the date of the sentence. However, when the
Defendant seeks a modification to Level Three probation,
there is no timing requirement. Therefore, this request
the Court will not hear repetitive requests for a sentence
modification. As previously mentioned, this the
Defendant's second motion under Rule 35. Here, the fact
that Defendant is seeking discharge or reduction of his Level
Three probation is irrelevant. The bar to successive Rule 35
motions applies to all types of sentence modification
requests. Thus, Defendant's Motion is denied
on that basis. However, in the alternative, the Court
considers Defendant's substantive arguments.
purpose behind Rule 35(b) "has historically been to
provide a reasonable period for the court to consider
alteration of its sentencing judgments." When
considering the sentence, "the court has broad
discretion to decide if it should alter its judgment. The
reason for such a rule is to give a sentencing judge a second
chance to consider whether the initial sentence is
appropriate"  Here, the Court sees no reason to alter its
previous sentence; the sentence is appropriate.
states that he suffers from numerous serious health
conditions. He has been diagnosed with prostate cancer,
Hurthle Cell thyroid cancer, and metastatic lung
cancer.Additionally, Defendant has been
treated with Interferon for Hepatitis C. Due to these health
concerns, Defendant would like for his Level Three probation
time to be reduced or discharged. To date, Defendant has
completed about one year of his two years on Level Three
claims to be remorseful and acknowledges that he
"terrorized, abused, and bullied a young fragile child
who had the right to feel safe and loved."
Furthermore, he has completed numerous treatment and
rehabilitative programs while incarcerated, such as the Key
Program, Greentree Residential Substance Abuse Rehabilitative
Program, the Impact of Crime on Victims Seminar, and the
Catholic-Charities Anger Management Program. Defendant
currently participates in mental health counseling. As a
result of these efforts, Defendant claims to be a changed
man. He feels that he has been adequately punished, as he has
lost his medical license, his reputation has been destroyed,
and he is reviled in the community. Defendant also notes that
he has ...