Commonwealth v. Stanley, 112520 PASUP, 228 EDA 2020

Docket Nº:228 EDA 2020
Opinion Judge:McLAUGHLIN, J.
Party Name:COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA v. PAUL STANLEY Appellant
Judge Panel:BEFORE: PANELLA, P.J., McLAUGHLIN, J., and McCAFFERY, J.
Case Date:November 25, 2020
Court:Superior Court of Pennsylvania

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA

v.

PAUL STANLEY Appellant

No. 228 EDA 2020

Superior Court of Pennsylvania

November 25, 2020

NON-PRECEDENTIAL DECISION - SEE SUPERIOR COURT I.O.P. 65.37

Appeal from the Judgment of Sentence Entered August 9, 2018 In the Court of Common Pleas of Bucks County Criminal Division at No(s): CP-09-CR-0002218-2018

BEFORE: PANELLA, P.J., McLAUGHLIN, J., and McCAFFERY, J.

MEMORANDUM

McLAUGHLIN, J.

Paul Stanley appeals the judgment of sentence entered following his guilty plea to numerous offenses: Possession of Controlled Substance Contraband by Inmate Prohibited (Possession); Knowing and Intentional Possession of a Controlled Substance (K&I); and Possession with Intent to Deliver (PWID).1 Stanley argues that the trial court imposed an excessive sentence without considering his efforts at rehabilitation. We affirm.

At Stanley's plea hearing, the Commonwealth gave the following statement of the facts: [O]n Friday, December 29th, 2017, the defendant, Paul Stanley, was at the Men's Community Correction Center serving a sentence for possession with intent to deliver. Corrections officers conducted a search of [Stanley's] cell and found 69 packets of synthetic marijuana, sometimes called K2, which is a Schedule I controlled substance.

Cash was located in various items of [Stanley's] clothing totaling more than $1000. In addition, a ledger and Bucks County Corrections kiosk receipts were recovered.

On January 8, 2018, [Stanley] was interviewed and told investigators that he was a heavy smoker of K2. [Stanley] claimed that he purchased the K2 from another inmate and it was for personal use. He further claimed that the recovered cash was from his wife who brought him $100 to $300 every two weeks during visits. [Stanley] stated that his wife, quote, overspends and shops online, end quote, and brought [Stanley] the money to safeguard while he was incarcerated so that they could save the money to buy a house. He claimed that the ledger and receipts were because he ran a, quote, store for the commissary, end quote, and loaned money out to inmates to make purchases.

[Stanley's] wife was interviewed and repeated [Stanley's] explanation nearly word for word. She echoed [Stanley's] statement that he is a heavy user of K2, but admitted she had never seen him use it.

On January 9th of 2018, Investigator DiSandro intercepted outgoing mail from [Stanley] to his wife. In that letter [Stanley] instructed his wife what to say to investigators including, quote, you bring money on visits, usually $200 to $300, [totaling] about $1000. We're saving so we can move. You like to spend money, sometimes a little too much money. You know a little bit about me smoking K2. Don't worry, I don't smoke it. Those are the things you need to know. You don't know anything else about anything. The DTs will probabl[y] call you. Don't panic. Just say those things and nothing else, and just bang on them if you have to, end quote.

A recorded phone call was intercepted where [Stanley] instructed his wife as to how to retrieve cash that had been seized by investigators. He told her, quote, once you verified that you have been giving it to me they can't hold it, end quote. He also stated that since the money was, quote, split from the K2, ain't no case for delivery, end quote.

The synthetic marijuana tested positive for 5-Fluoro ADB, a Schedule I synthetic cannabinoid.

[Stanley] was reinterviewed on January 28th of 2018. He admitted he does not use K2 and that he had instructed his wife on what to tell investigators. . . .

Detective Joshua Mallory would opine that the 5-fluoro ADB was possessed with the intent to deliver. . . .

N.T., Guilty Plea Hearing, 8/9/18, at 8-11. The Commonwealth noted that Stanley had prior PWID convictions in 2013, 2016, and 2017. Id. at 11. It added, "He was serving the sentence for the third of those convictions at the time that this [crime] occurred." Id.

Prior to sentencing, the trial court informed Stanley that the Sentencing Guidelines for PWID provided "18 months in the mitigated range, 24-30 in the standard, and 36 in the aggravated" range. Id. at 12. The same ranges applied for the contraband conviction. Id. The court also informed Stanley that the maximum sentence for PWID was 30 years since his case involved a second or subsequent offense. Id. at 13. Stanley's counsel then conducted an oral colloquy with Stanley during which Stanley said that he understood he was pleading guilty. Stanley also testified that he had...

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