Crabtree v. State (Unpublished Memo): Crabtree was surprised when the trial court sentenced her to two years of prison for criminally negligent homicide. The Tyler court says she shouldn’t have been. Sentence affirmed.
Crabtree’s counsel told her, correctly, that the State would recommend probation if she pled guilty and agreed to be sentenced by the trial court. Crabtree’s counsel also told her that the trial court “most always” went with the State’s recommendation. Apparently, Crabtree heard that as a guarantee. It wasn’t.
When the trial court gave a sentence that was more than the State asked, Crabtree filed a motion for new trial. She alleged that her trial counsel was ineffective because he failed to let her know what might happen at sentencing.
The Tyler court sings Crabtree a song:
We beg your pardon,
Trial counsel never promised you a rose garden.
Along with the sunshine,
There’s gotta be a little rain sometimes.
Well, OK, the Tyler court was a little more circumspect, holding that, no matter how Crabtree heard what was said, “by the plain meaning of the language used, Appellant’s attorney made no guarantees.”
Crabtree also alleged that her trial counsel’s preparation was shoddy. The Tyler court denied that ground of appeal as well, citing the Strickland case discussed in an earlier post.