Submitted: August 5, 2019
Below: Superior Court of the State of Delaware Cr. ID:
VALIHURA, SEITZ, and TRAYNOR, Justices.
F. Traynor Justice.
August 2016, Darrin Swiggett pleaded guilty to one count of
possession of a controlled substance, and the Superior Court
sentenced him to 25 years of Level V imprisonment, suspended
after two years for one year of Level III
June 6, 2018, while Swiggett was serving his year of
probation, three Delaware Probation and Parole officers went
to Swiggett's three-bedroom apartment at 255 Webbs Lane
for a home visit. One of the officers observed a man, Michael
Collier, standing on Swiggett's balcony and tossing an
object into a trash can. Another officer went to the balcony
and retrieved a package of 104 bags of heroin from that trash
can. The officers then searched the rest of the apartment. In
Swiggett's bedroom closet, police found a men's
leather jacket with 20 grams of cocaine and $520 cash inside,
a women's jacket with 7 grams of marijuana inside, and a
State charged Swiggett with six criminal charges and
initiated violation-of-probation proceedings. The
violation-of-probation proceedings were stayed pending the
resolution of the criminal charges. On Swiggett's motion,
the Superior Court entered judgments of acquittal on all six
With the criminal case concluded, the Superior Court held a
contested violation-of-probation hearing on March 14, 2019.
The only condition of probation that Swiggett was alleged to
have violated was the condition prohibiting him from
committing a new criminal offense.
After hearing the parties' presentations, the court found
Swiggett in violation of his probation, ruling that "the
probationer is not to reside in a residence for
[sic] which contraband is found, [and] that is a
violation." The court revoked Swiggett's probation
and resentenced him to 23 years of Level V imprisonment,
suspended for time served, followed by one year of Level IV
work release, followed by one year of Level III probation.
Swiggett appeals his revocation of probation to us on the
basis that not residing in a residence in which contraband is
found was not a condition of his probation. The State
concedes error and requests that we reverse the Superior
Court's violation-of-probation finding.
Given that the State agrees with Swiggett, concedes error,
and advances no alternative grounds for affirmance, we
reverse the revocation of Swiggett's probation.
THEREFORE, IT IS ORDERED that the judgment of the Superior
Court is REVERSED, and this matter is REMANDED with
instructions to set aside the March 14, 2019 Violation of
Probation Order. The mandate shall issue forthwith.