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State v. Doolin

Court of Appeals of Missouri, Western District, Second Division

March 19, 2019

STATE OF MISSOURI, Respondent,
v.
ADRIAN S. DOOLIN, Appellant.

          APPEAL FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF BUCHANAN COUNTY, MISSOURI THE HONORABLE PATRICK K. ROBB, JUDGE

          Before: Edward R. Ardini, Jr., Presiding Judge, Gary D. Witt, Judge and Thomas N. Chapman, Judge

          EDWARD R. ARDINI, JR., JUDGE

         Adrian Doolin appeals the denial of his Rule 29.07(d)[1] motion to withdraw his guilty plea by the Circuit Court of Buchanan County. Doolin claims that his guilty plea to sexual misconduct in the first degree was induced by plea counsel's assurance that he would never be required to register as a sex offender. He argues that this advice was erroneous and resulted in manifest injustice. We affirm.

         Factual and Procedural Background

         Doolin was charged with the class C felony of possession of a controlled substance (Xanax) and the class B misdemeanor of sexual misconduct in the first degree.[2] Doolin entered open guilty pleas to both offenses on September 5, 2014.

         At the plea hearing, Doolin admitted that while trying on clothes at a Goodwill store, he began disrobing and exposed his genitals to a store employee. Doolin was ejected from the store and went across the street to a shopping mall where he was subsequently arrested. A search of his backpack incident to his arrest revealed Xanax pills, for which Doolin did not have a prescription.

         A discussion ensued over whether his plea to sexual misconduct in the first degree would require registration as a sex offender:

[Doolin:] This is not a registerable offense; is that correct?
[The Court:] I do not believe it is. . . . [Assistant Prosecutor], you're probably more of an expert on it than I am.
[Assistant Prosecutor:] It's not.
[The Court:] That's what I thought, but I just- . . . I assume that's what [plea counsel] has advised?
[Doolin:] Yes, sir.

         [The Court:] That's my understanding, too. The court accepted Doolin's guilty pleas. On November 10, 2014, a sentencing hearing was held. At the hearing, Doolin's plea counsel identified to the court two errors in the sentencing assessment report (SAR). First, the SAR incorrectly stated that the sexual misconduct charge to which Doolin pleaded guilty was a class D felony when, in fact, it was a class B misdemeanor. The SAR also stated that Doolin "shall comply with the state sex offender registration laws[.]" Plea counsel explained to the court that no registration was required, and the court made the change to the SAR:

[PLEA COUNSEL:] It is our understanding and it's been our understanding through the entire pendency of this case that the Class B misdemeanor that he's charged with is not a registrable offense. Our paralegal researched it. [Doolin's former attorney] researched it. I researched it.
And we all came to the same conclusion that this did not have any sexual acts or anything like that so that he would not have to register on this offense.
THE COURT: Okay. Well, I haven't looked at the statute. I'll just take your word for it and we'll . . . mark it as such.

         Doolin then sought clarification that he would not have to register as a sex offender:

THE DEFENDANT: I just want that to be 100 percent that-you know, if the statute is that; otherwise-I mean, I would hate to be, you know-
[PLEA COUNSEL:] He wanted to be assured before he pled guilty that that was true.
THE COURT: Well, it sounds like your counsel assured you. I don't ...

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