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Salih v. State
Supreme Court of Delaware
June 19, 2019
SALIH, f.k.a. CECIL L. HALL, Defendant Below, Appellant,
STATE OF DELAWARE, Plaintiff Below, Appellee.
Submitted: May 7, 2019
Below-Superior Court of the State of Delaware Cr. ID No.
STRINE, Chief Justice; VALIHURA and TRAYNOR, Justices.
STRINE, JR. CHIEF JUSTICE.
consideration of the appellant's opening brief, the
State's motion to affirm, and the record on appeal, it
appears to the Court that:
(1) The appellant, Salih,  appeals from the Superior Court's
denial of his "Motion for Relief from Judgment Pursuant
to Superior Court Rules." The State has filed a motion
to affirm the Superior Court's judgment on the ground
that it is manifest on the face of Salih's opening brief
that the appeal is without merit. We agree and affirm.
(2) In 2006, Salih pleaded guilty to two counts of Burglary
Third Degree, in exchange for which the State dismissed
multiple additional charges arising from break-ins at a
retail store in 2005. On December 1, 2006, the Superior Court
sentenced Salih as a habitual offender to a total of twelve
years' imprisonment, suspended after ten years for
decreasing levels of supervision. Salih filed a direct
appeal,  a motion for postconviction relief,
multiple motions seeking correction or modification of his
(3) On February 6, 2019, after Salih had been released from
prison and successfully discharged from probation, he filed a
"Motion for Relief from Judgment Pursuant to Superior
Court Rules." Invoking Superior Court Criminal Rule
57(d) and Superior Court Civil Rule 60(b)(5), he asked the
court to find that "it is no longer equitable that the
judgment should have prospective application" and to set
aside the judgment and expunge his record, so that he would
no longer be disenfranchised from society as a result of his
convictions. The Superior Court denied the motion, stating
that "Rule 60 of [the] Superior Court Civil Rules is not
an available remedy in a criminal postconviction
(4) Salih then sought reconsideration, arguing that the
Superior Court had failed to understand that his motion
sought to invoke the Superior Court's "equitable
jurisdiction to determine whether the damaging effect of a
criminal conviction, after complete satisfaction of its
sanction, should continue to have prospective
application." Salih further argued that he had "no
remedy at law to review the harm he continues to suffer on
the basis of the presence of the judgment of
conviction." The Superior Court denied the motion for
reconsideration, concluding that "the Court did not
overlook a controlling precedent or legal opinion as the
authority relied upon by [Salih] utilizes the Delaware Court
of Chancery's exclusive equitable jurisdiction and not
the legal jurisdiction used by the Court." Salih has
appealed to this Court.
(5) We affirm the Superior Court's judgment.
"Superior Court Criminal Rule 61 provides the exclusive
remedy for setting aside a final criminal conviction,"
and "Superior Court Civil Rule 60(b) cannot be used to
collaterally attack a criminal
conviction." Salih can no longer challenge his
convictions under Criminal Rule 61, because he is no longer
(6) Moreover, the Superior Court correctly rejected
Salih's attempt to invoke the "equitable
jurisdiction" of the Superior Court. Section 542 of
Title 10 of the Delaware Code does not confer equitable
jurisdiction on the Superior Court, but rather authorizes
that court to "exercise its powers 'according to law
and equity'" as to matters that are within its
jurisdiction. Finally, to the extent that Salih's
record prevents him from engaging in particular professions
or chills his ability to secure employment, he must seek a
pardon or legislative action.
THEREFORE, IT IS ORDERED that the motion to affirm is GRANTED
and the judgment of the Superior Court is AFFIRMED.
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