State v. Collins, No. SC05-108.

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Florida
Writing for the CourtCantero
PartiesSTATE of Florida, Petitioner, v. Ransom Louis COLLINS, Respondent.
Decision Date05 June 2008
Docket NumberNo. SC05-108.
985 So.2d 985
STATE of Florida, Petitioner,
v.
Ransom Louis COLLINS, Respondent.
No. SC05-108.
Supreme Court of Florida.
June 5, 2008.

[985 So.2d 986]

Bill McCollum, Attorney General, Tallahassee, Florida, and Robert J. Krauss, Assistant Attorney General, Bureau Chief, and Ronald Napolitano, Assistant Attorney General, Tampa, FL, for Petitioner.

James Marion Moorman, Public Defender, and Tosha Cohen, Assistant Public Defender, Bartow, FL, for Respondent.

CANTERO, J.


We must decide whether, when a criminal sentence is reversed on appeal because of insufficient evidence of the defendant's habitual offender status, upon remand for resentencing the State may present new evidence on that issue. We review Collins v. State, 893 So.2d 592 (Fla. 2d DCA 2004), in which the Second District Court of Appeal held that the State could not present new evidence on remand. It certified conflict with several decisions from other districts: Wilson v. State, 830 So.2d 244 (Fla. 4th DCA 2002); Cameron v. State, 807 So.2d 746 (Fla. 4th DCA 2002); Morss v. State, 795 So.2d 262 (Fla. 5th DCA 2001); Roberts v. State, 776 So.2d 1034 (Fla. 4th DCA 2001); Rhodes v. State, 704 So.2d 1080 (Fla. 1st DCA 1997); and Brown v. State, 701 So.2d 410 (Fla. 1st DCA 1997). We have jurisdiction to resolve the certified conflict. See art. V, § 3(b)(4), Fla. Const. We hold that the State may indeed present additional evidence on remand. Below we discuss the conflict in the district courts and then explain our holding.

I. THE DECISIONS IN CONFLICT

The respondent, Ransom Louis Collins, pled no contest to robbery. The State sought to sentence him as a habitual felony offender. To that end, at sentencing it presented evidence of several previous felony convictions. Defense counsel argued, however, that the evidence failed to demonstrate that his prior convictions were "separately sentenced," as the habitual offender statute, section 775.084(5), Florida Statutes (2001), requires.1 The trial court

985 So.2d 987

overruled the objection and sentenced Collins as a habitual felony offender to twenty years in prison.

On appeal, the Second District reversed the sentence because the State presented insufficient evidence establishing the predicate convictions. As the court noted:

[T]he State concedes that the documents presented to the trial court failed to preclude the possibility that all of Collins's prior felony offenses were originally sentenced on the same date. Although the record contains evidence that Collins has been convicted of a number of felonies, many of the documents used as evidence of convictions were in fact orders that revoked probation. The orders revoking probation do not disclose when Collins was originally sentenced to probation, only the date of revocation.... The State concedes that where probation was imposed and subsequently revoked with the imposition of a prison sentence, the date of the original imposition of probation is the date that must be used in determining whether the offense was separately sentenced under section 775.084(5).

Collins, 893 So.2d at 593-94.2 The Second District prohibited the State from correcting the error on remand by producing additional evidence. Id. The district court held that, where the defendant objects to a habitual felony offender sentence because the State failed to present sufficient evidence of the predicate convictions, and the appellate court reverses the sentence on that basis, the State cannot present additional evidence on remand. 893 So.2d at 594. The court noted "that a different rule applies where the defendant has failed to make a proper objection during the sentencing proceeding to the basis for the habitual offender sentence." Id. at 594 n. 2 (citing Bover, 797 So.2d at 1251). Thus, in the Second District, where the State fails to present sufficient evidence that the defendant was a habitual felony offender and the defendant objects, the State cannot present additional evidence on remand.

The Second District's holding conflicts with the law in the majority of districts. The court certified conflict with decisions of the First, Fourth, and Fifth District Courts of Appeal, which allowed the State to prove the predicate convictions on remand even though the defense had objected at sentencing. Id. at 594; see Wilson, 830 So.2d at 245 (permitting resentencing as a habitual felony offender on remand if the State can establish the required predicate convictions and the identity of the defendant as the person named in the judgments of conviction); Cameron, 807 So.2d at 747-48 (permitting resentencing as a habitual felony offender if the State introduces sufficient evidence to establish the defendant's release date within the five-year window); Morss, 795 So.2d at 263 (permitting resentencing as a habitual felony offender on remand following a reversal for failure to present copies of the prior felony judgments and sentences);

985 So.2d 988

Roberts, 776 So.2d at 1034 (permitting resentencing as a habitual felony offender on remand upon proper proof); Brown, 701 So.2d at 410 (permitting resentencing as a habitual felony offender on remand upon presentation of proper proof that the defendant was the person named in the certified copies of judgments and convictions);3 see also Walker v. State, 33 Fla. L. Weekly D44, D44, ___ So.2d ___, ___, 2007 WL 4462982 (Fla. 2d DCA Dec.21, 2007) (Altenbernd, J., concurring specially) ("Were we writing on a clean slate, I would follow the First, Fourth, and Fifth Districts in concluding that this evidentiary error does not preclude the State from seeking a habitual felony offender sentence on remand.").4 We now resolve the conflict.

II. ANALYSIS

Before addressing the conflict issue, we must note the issues we do not resolve. The State has conceded that the evidence at sentencing was insufficient to sentence Collins as a habitual felony offender. Thus, the sufficiency of the evidence is not before us. Likewise, in Bover, we held that when the defense fails to object to the sufficiency of the evidence, the State may present additional evidence of habitual felony offender status. See Bover, 797 So.2d at 1251. Therefore, we do not decide that issue, either. Finally, we do not here consider the effect on resentencing proceedings of two recent United States Supreme Court cases: Apprendi v. New Jersey, 530 U.S. 466, 491, 120 S.Ct. 2348, 147 L.Ed.2d 435 (2000) (holding that all facts that would enhance the defendant's sentence above the statutory maximum must be found by a jury), and Blakely v. Washington, 542 U.S. 296, 303, 124 S.Ct. 2531, 159 L.Ed.2d 403 (2004) (holding that, for purposes of Apprendi, the statutory maximum is the maximum sentence that may be imposed based solely on the jury's findings).

What we do address is the narrow question left open in Bover: when the defendant does object at sentencing to the sufficiency of the State's evidence supporting the habitual felony offender sentence, and on appeal the district court reverses on that basis, on remand for resentencing may the State present new evidence that the defendant is a habitual felony offender? Our answer is yes. We hold that because resentencing is a de novo proceeding, on remand the State may present additional evidence to prove that the defendant qualifies for habitual felony offender sentencing.

In the following discussion, we: (A) explain that a resentencing is a de novo proceeding; (B) discuss the inapplicability of our decision in Shull v. Dugger, 515 So.2d 748 (Fla.1987), to habitual felony

985 So.2d 989

offender sentencing; (C) explain that our decision does not implicate double jeopardy concerns; and (D) explain that resentencing as a habitual felony offender does not violate due process.

A. Resentencing as a New Proceeding

In both capital and noncapital cases, we have held that resentencing is a new proceeding. In death penalty cases, we have stated that "[t]he basic premise of sentencing procedure is that the sentencer is to consider all relevant evidence regarding the nature of the crime and the character of the defendant to determine appropriate punishment." Wike v. State, 698 So.2d 817, 821 (Fla.1997). Thus, we have recognized that a resentencing must proceed "as an entirely new proceeding," id., and that a "resentencing should proceed de novo on all issues bearing on the proper sentence." Teffeteller v. State, 495 So.2d 744, 745 (Fla. 1986). In noncapital cases, too, we have concluded that "resentencing entitles the defendant to a de novo sentencing hearing with the full array of due process rights." Trotter v. State, 825 So.2d 362, 367-68 (Fla.2002); see also Galindez v. State, 955 So.2d 517, 525 (Fla.2007) (Cantero, J., specially concurring) ("We have consistently held that resentencing proceedings must be a `clean slate,' meaning that the defendant's vacated sentence becomes a `nullity' and his `resentencing should proceed de novo on all issues bearing on the proper sentence.'" (citation omitted)); Walker, 33 Fla. L. Weekly at D44, ___ So.2d at ___ (Altenbernd, J., concurring specially) ("Generally, courts have held that once a defendant successfully challenges his sentence on appeal and the cause is remanded for resentencing, the resentencing is a `de novo' proceeding, at which either side may present evidence anew regarding the appropriate sentence.").

The principle of de novo sentencing often benefits the defendant. See, e.g., Galindez, 955 So.2d at 525 (Cantero, J., specially concurring) ("In fact, because resentencing is de novo, the State was required to produce evidence on sentencing issues even if the State established the fact at the original sentencing."); Tubwell v. State, 922 So.2d 378, 379 (Fla. 1st DCA 2006) ("As this resentencing proceeding was de novo, the state was not relieved of its burden to prove the prior offenses." (citations omitted)); Rich v. State, 814 So.2d 1207, 1208 (Fla. 4th DCA 2002) (holding that because resentencing...

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74 practice notes
  • Scott v. State, No. 2412, Sept. Term, 2014
    • United States
    • Court of Special Appeals of Maryland
    • October 26, 2016
    ...for the first time whether resentencing is governed by double jeopardy principles have held that it is not. See State v. Collins, 985 So.2d 985, 993 (Fla. 2008) (holding, based on Monge, that Florida's “Double Jeopardy Clause does not preclude granting the State a second opportunity to demo......
  • State v. Fleming, No. SC06–1173.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • February 3, 2011
    ...is de novo, we have held that both parties may present new evidence bearing on the sentence. For example, in State v. Collins, 985 So.2d 985, 994 (Fla.2008), we held “that when a habitual offender sentence is reversed because of insufficient evidence, on remand for resentencing the State ma......
  • Day v. Sec'y, Fla. Dep't of Corr., Case No. 3:15-cv-698-MMH-PDB
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 11th Circuit. United States District Court of Middle District of Florida
    • May 26, 2021
    ...the State to produce evidence on sentencing issues even if it had done so at the original sentencingPage 20 hearing. State v. Collins, 985 So. 2d 985, 989 (Fla. 2008) (citations omitted). Likewise, a trial court "is not limited by the evidence originally presented." Id. Here, the circuit co......
  • Shuler v. Wellhausen, CASE NO. 8:10-CV-1678-T-27AEP
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 11th Circuit. United States District Court of Middle District of Florida
    • September 30, 2013
    ...implicated in the instant case where the case was remanded for resentencing, such a resentencing is de novo. [See also State v. Collins, 985 So.2d 985 (Fla. 2008)] Based on the above, the Defendant's claim as asserted in his Motion to Amend Ground for Rule 3.850 Motion for Post Conviction R......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
74 cases
  • Scott v. State, No. 2412, Sept. Term, 2014
    • United States
    • Court of Special Appeals of Maryland
    • October 26, 2016
    ...for the first time whether resentencing is governed by double jeopardy principles have held that it is not. See State v. Collins, 985 So.2d 985, 993 (Fla. 2008) (holding, based on Monge, that Florida's “Double Jeopardy Clause does not preclude granting the State a second opportunity to demo......
  • State v. Fleming, No. SC06–1173.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • February 3, 2011
    ...is de novo, we have held that both parties may present new evidence bearing on the sentence. For example, in State v. Collins, 985 So.2d 985, 994 (Fla.2008), we held “that when a habitual offender sentence is reversed because of insufficient evidence, on remand for resentencing the State ma......
  • Day v. Sec'y, Fla. Dep't of Corr., Case No. 3:15-cv-698-MMH-PDB
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 11th Circuit. United States District Court of Middle District of Florida
    • May 26, 2021
    ...the State to produce evidence on sentencing issues even if it had done so at the original sentencingPage 20 hearing. State v. Collins, 985 So. 2d 985, 989 (Fla. 2008) (citations omitted). Likewise, a trial court "is not limited by the evidence originally presented." Id. Here, the circuit co......
  • Shuler v. Wellhausen, CASE NO. 8:10-CV-1678-T-27AEP
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 11th Circuit. United States District Court of Middle District of Florida
    • September 30, 2013
    ...implicated in the instant case where the case was remanded for resentencing, such a resentencing is de novo. [See also State v. Collins, 985 So.2d 985 (Fla. 2008)] Based on the above, the Defendant's claim as asserted in his Motion to Amend Ground for Rule 3.850 Motion for Post Conviction R......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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