Court of Appeals of Missouri, Eastern District, Second Division
from the Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis Honorable
Steven R. Ohmer
B. SULLIVAN, P.J.
Shockley, Sr. (Appellant) appeals from the trial court's
judgment convicting him of the class C felony of stealing a
motor vehicle and sentencing him to three years as a
persistent offender. We reverse and remand.
and Procedural Background
Liebermann (Liebermann) owns a 1991 Honda Civic in
"great condition" with no mechanical problems.
Liebermann arrived at his parking lot where he kept his Civic
parked and noticed it was missing. A nearby surveillance
camera system revealed the Civic had been taken the day
before, on April 21, 2014. The video revealed a truck that
had "I buy junk cars" language written on it
entering the parking lot at 8:50 a.m., then leaving. At 3:50
p.m., a different truck pulled into the parking lot.
Appellant and another man stepped out of the truck and walked
around the Civic. The two pushed the Civic out of the parking
lot, and then Appellant got back into the truck and the other
man stepped inside the Civic. The Civic then went out of view
of the surveillance camera.
later arrested Appellant. Appellant made a statement to
police and testified at trial that he buys and sells junk
cars; he received a call from an individual seeking to sell
the Civic for $150 because it was broken down. Appellant paid
the individual only $75 because he provided no title.
Appellant then sold the Civic to an individual in Troy for
State charged Appellant with felony stealing a motor vehicle
on April 21, 2014, under Section 570.030. Appellant opted
for a bench trial, and after being found to be a persistent
offender, was tried and found guilty as charged. The court
sentenced Appellant to three years. This appeal follows.
point on appeal, Appellant claims the trial court erred in
entering judgment for the class C felony of stealing a motor
vehicle and in sentencing him to three years'
imprisonment for that offense because the sentencing
enhancement factors contained in Section 570.030.3 apply only
to "any offense in which the value of property or
services is an element, " and value is not an element of
stealing a motor vehicle.
made no objection at his judgment and sentencing. An
unpreserved claim of error can be reviewed only for plain
error, which requires a finding of manifest injustice or a
miscarriage of justice resulting from the trial court's
error. State v. Celis-Garcia, 344 S.W.3d 150, 154
(Mo.banc 2011). Plain error relief is appropriate when the
alleged error so affects the rights of the defendant as to
cause a manifest injustice or miscarriage of justice.
State v. Phelps, 965 S.W.2d 357, 358 (Mo.App. W.D.
1998). An unauthorized sentence affects substantial rights
and results in manifest injustice. Drennan v. State,
906 S.W.2d 880, 882 (Mo.App. E.D. 1995).
Section 570.030, titled Stealing - Penalties, provides in