THE ALABAMA REDEEMER ACT

New Alabama Expungement Law Passes

Allows Expungement of Felony and Misdemeanor Convictions

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RESENTENCING OF HABITUAL OFFENDERS PROPOSED

resentencing

A 2021 ALABAMA HOUSE BILL PROPOSES RESENTENCING OF HABITUAL OFFENDERS WITH NON VIOLENT CONVICTIONS

House Bill 24 proposes allowing resentencing of habitual offenders who have non-violent convictions prior to October 1, 2013.

The proposed law would allow resentencing of habitual offenders under certain limited circumstances. People who were convicted of a non-violent offense prior to October 1, 2013 and who were sentenced under the Habitual Felony Offender Act, would be allowed to petition the court to be resentenced under to the presumptive sentencing standards currently in effect.

If the law passes, a person could file a motion for reduction in sentence under the presumptive sentencing standards in effect at the time of the motion, provided that the person meets certain criteria. The proposed law states:

(d) To be eligible for a reduction in sentencing both of the following shall be satisfied:

(1) The covered offense occurred prior to October 1, 2013.

(2) The motion for reduction in sentence is accompanied by evidence that the defendant has demonstrated behavior during incarceration that would indicate his or her fitness for resentencing pursuant to this section.

The motion would be filed in the county were the case originated, and would be assigned to the judge that imposed the sentence if possible. In ruling on the motion for resentencing, the judge would take into consideration the nature of the underlying offense and the persons behavior while in custody. No person is guaranteed to be resentenced, and whether to grant the motion is left strictly to the judge. One limitation in the bill is that the relief would only be available to persons who are presently serving a sentence in the Alabama Department of Corrections.

In our opinion, this appears to be a measure aimed at relieving overcrowded state prisons by resentencing non-violent offenders in such a way as to result in their release from custody. In many cases it is likely that the new sentence under the presumptive guidelines would be equal to or less than the time already served, and the person would be immediately released.

As with any judicial proceeding or court matter, we strongly advise that a person hire a lawyer to represent them in the case. This is our recommendation in this instance particularly because the judge is given total discretion to grant the motion or not.

UPDATE

THE ALABAMA HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES PASSED THE BILL ON FEBRUARY 9, 2021. THE BILL WILL NOW GO TO THE ALABAMA SENATE FOR CONSIDERATION. CHECK BACK FOR MORE UPDATES.

If the bill passes and the law goes into effect, Bradford Ladner LLP will be ready to file motions for resentencing.

Please return to our website later this year, as we will post periodic updates on the house bill.

Bradford Ladner, LLP. is an Alabama based law firm with offices in Birmingham, Clanton, and Mobile, practicing Federal Criminal Defense, Alabama State Criminal Defense, Federal Criminal Appeals, State Criminal and Civil Appeals, Divorce and Child Custody Matters, and Alabama Civil Litigation. We practice in all Alabama Courts Statewide and in Federal Court Nationwide
Call and talk to a lawyer today: 251-303-8800 or 205-802-8823 Email Us: info@bradfordladner.com