Court of Appeals of Missouri, Western District, Second Division
from the Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri The
Honorable Kevin D. Harrell, Judge
Before: Karen King Mitchell, Presiding Judge, and Cynthia L.
Martin and Gary D. Witt, Judges
King Mitchell, Presiding Judge
Cooper challenges his conviction for failure to register as a
sex offender, a class D felony. §
589.425.1. Because Cooper entered a guilty plea and
does not challenge the subject matter jurisdiction of the
plea court or the sufficiency of the charging document, we
dismiss the appeal.
pled guilty to first-degree sexual abuse on November 17,
1992, and received a suspended imposition of sentence. On
September 2, 2014, the State filed a complaint alleging that
Cooper had failed to register as a sex offender in violation
of § 589.400. On January 4, 2016, Cooper pleaded guilty
to not registering as a sex offender, and the trial court
sentenced him to four years in the Missouri Department of
Corrections, suspended execution of the sentence, and placed
Cooper on probation for three years, with the condition that
Cooper would have to register as a sex offender.
appealed the sentence to the Missouri Supreme Court,
attacking, among other things, the constitutionality of
certain ordinances and statutes. The State filed a motion to
transfer the case to this court, arguing that Cooper's
constitutional challenges were not real and substantial. The
Court granted the motion, and transferred the case to this
we address the merits of Cooper's claims, we must address
whether this court has jurisdiction over Cooper's direct
appeal. "In Missouri, the general rule is that a guilty
plea waives all nonjurisdictional defects, including
statutory and constitutional guarantees." Garris v.
State, 389 S.W.3d 648, 651 (Mo. banc 2012). "The
general waiver rule exists because '[a] guilty plea not
only admits guilt but also consents to judgment of conviction
without a jury trial.'" State v. Hopkins,
432 S.W.3d 208, 211 (Mo. App. W.D. 2014) (quoting
Garris, 389 S.W.3d at 651). "Therefore,
'[i]n a direct appeal of a judgment and sentence entered
as a result of a guilty plea, our review is restricted to
[claims involving] the subject-matter jurisdiction of the
trial court and the sufficiency of the information or
indictment.'" Id. (quoting State v.
Onate, 398 S.W.3d 102, 105 (Mo. App. W.D. 2013)).
some of his arguments are difficult to decipher,
is clear that none of Cooper's six points challenge
either the trial court's subject matter jurisdiction over
the action ("[T]he circuit courts shall have original
jurisdiction over all cases and matters, civil and
criminal." J.C.W. ex rel. Webb v. Wyciskalla,
275 S.W.3d 249, 253 (Mo. banc 2009) (quoting Mo. Const. art.
5, § 14)) or the sufficiency of the indictment
("[T]he test of the sufficiency of an indictment is
whether it contains all the essential elements of the offense
as set out in the statute and clearly apprises defendant of
the facts constituting the offense in order to enable him to
meet the charge and to bar further prosecution."
State v. Metzinger, 456 S.W.3d 84, 91 (Mo. App. E.D.
2015) (quoting State v. Reese, 687 S.W.2d 635, 636
(Mo. App. S.D. 1985))).
24.035 creates an exception to the general rule that a plea
of guilty waives the right to challenge alleged error
relating to the plea and sentence." Hopkins,
432 S.W.3d at 211. "Challenges to either the
voluntariness of the plea or 'the legality of the
sentence imposed may be considered only in response to a Rule
24.035 motion.'" Id. (quoting
Onate, 398 S.W.3d at 105). But this is not an appeal
from the denial of a Rule 24.035 motion. And again,
"'[i]n a direct appeal of a judgment and sentence
entered as a result of a guilty plea, our review is
restricted to [claims involving] the subject-matter
jurisdiction of the trial court and the sufficiency of the
information or indictment.'" Hopkins, 432
S.W.3d at 211 (quoting Garris, 389 S.W.3d at 651).
Accordingly, Cooper's "claims related to alleged
[trial] court error . . . are not cognizable in a direct
appeal."Id. . at 213.
we have no authority to review Cooper's arguments on
direct appeal related to allegations of trial court error