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State v. Albright

Supreme Court of Kansas

February 2, 2018

State of Kansas, Appellee,
v.
William D. Albright, Appellant.

         SYLLABUS BY THE COURT

          1. Because the definition of an illegal sentence does not include a claim that the sentence violates a constitutional provision, a party cannot use a motion to correct an illegal sentence under K.S.A. 22-3504 to seek relief based on the constitutional holding in Alleyne v. United States, 570 U.S. 99, 133 S.Ct. 2151, 186 L.Ed.2d 314 (2013).

         2. The change in the law effected by Alleyne v. United States, 570 U.S. 99, 133 S.Ct. 2151, 186 L.Ed.2d 314 (2013), cannot provide the manifest injustice necessary to excuse the untimeliness of a 60-1507 motion.

         3. The change in the law effected by Alleyne v. United States, 570 U.S. 99, 133 S.Ct. 2151, 186 L.Ed.2d 314 (2013), cannot be applied retroactively to cases that were final when Alleyne was decided.

         Appeal from Kingman District Court; Larry T. Solomon, judge.

          Christina M. Kerls, of Kansas Appellate Defender Office, was on the brief for appellant.

          Kristafer R. Ailslieger, deputy solicitor general, and Derek Schmidt, attorney general, were on the brief for appellee.

          OPINION

          Rosen, J.

         William Albright appeals the district court's denial of his "motion for resentencing." In his motion, Albright argued that Alleyne v. United States, 570 U.S. 99, 133 S.Ct. 2151, 186 L.Ed.2d 314 (2013), renders his hard 40 sentence unconstitutional. The district court construed Albright's "motion for resentencing" as a collateral challenge under K.S.A. 60-1507 and concluded that Albright was not entitled to relief because Alleyne cannot be applied retroactively to a sentence that was final when Alleyne was decided. We affirm.

         Factual and Procedural Background

         On March 11, 1999, a jury convicted Albright of first-degree murder. The district court sentenced Albright to life in prison with no possibility of parole for 40 years. On June 1, 2001, this court affirmed that sentence. State v. Albright, 271 Kan. 546, 24 P.3d 103 (2001).

         On March 25, 2002, Albright filed a K.S.A. 60-1507 motion alleging ineffective assistance of trial counsel. The district court denied the motion, but the Court of Appeals reversed and remanded Albright's case for a new trial. State v. Albright, No. 90, 216, 2004 WL 1041350 (Kan. App.) (unpublished opinion), rev. denied 278 Kan. 843 (2004). At the second trial, a jury again convicted Albright of first-degree murder.

          After Albright was convicted at the second trial, but before sentencing, Albright filed a motion to find the hard 40 sentencing scheme unconstitutional under Apprendi v. New Jersey, 530 U.S. 466, 120 S.Ct. 2348, 147 L.Ed.2d 435 (2000). On March 28, 2005, the district court denied the motion and again sentenced Albright to life in prison with no possibility of parole for 40 years. The hard 40 was imposed as a result of judicial fact-finding. Albright's seemingly clairvoyant talents did not result in relief. On March 16, 2007, this court affirmed Albright's conviction and sentence after observing that judicial fact-finding does not bring the imposition of a hard 40 sentence into conflict with Apprendi. State v. Albright, 283 Kan. 418, 425, 153 P.3d 497 (2007).

         On March 10, 2016, Albright filed a "motion for resentencing on a Hard 40 Sentence" asserting that his sentence was unconstitutional pursuant to Alleyne v. United States, 570 U.S. 99, 133 S.Ct. 2151, 186 L.Ed.2d 314 (2013). The district court denied relief. Albright appealed to this court. On appeal, Albright argues that, under Alleyne, his hard ...


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