Jones v. State

In Jones v. State, 811 P.2d 284 (Wyo. 1991), the defendant pleaded no contest to fourth degree sexual assault and guilty to larceny. 811 P.2d at 285. Jones was sentenced to serve sixty days on the assault count and was placed on two years probation on the larceny count. Id. The two counts were to be served concurrently. Id. Nineteen months after Jones' plea on the larceny count was entered, an order revoking his probation was entered. Id. at 286. In rejecting Jones' contention that his sentencing violated our rule laid out in Yates v. State, 792 P.2d 187 (Wyo. 1990), the Court replied: There are no meaningful similarities between Yates, and the problems identified there which caused us to vacate the sentence imposed, and this case. In Yates, prison sentences were imposed which made it virtually impossible to ascertain when the subsequent term of probation of ten years duration was to begin or end. Our principal concerns were that where sentence is suspended and probation allowed, and the possibility exists that the actual sentence could be imposed some fourteen years after the fact, a greater punishment may be meted out than is deserved because of subsequent conduct that results in a violation of the probation. Yates, 792 P.2d at 192. Jones does not raise such an issue here, nor do we perceive a problem in that regard. See generally, Annotation, Propriety of Increased Sentence Following Revocation of Probation, 23 A.L.R. 4th 883 (1983). Additionally, we were concerned that vagaries of memory could serve to interfere with the imposition of a sentence appropriate to the individual and the crime after the passage of so much time. Yates, 792 P.2d at 192. Again, Jones raises no such issue, nor do we perceive one. Most importantly, in Yates, we indicated that where sentence is imposed on several counts, the district court may not use the sentencing option outlined in W.S. 7-13-302 (1987 Repl.) in the same way it might on a single count. We indicated that that was not possible where a penitentiary sentence is involved because the statute contemplates that the term of probation will begin to run immediately upon imposition of sentence. Yates, 792 P.2d at 191. We were also concerned that any such sentence must allow for the possibility that a criminal will be granted parole, which is supervised by the executive branch of government, and that probation should not commence until after any such term of parole is completed. Here a sixty-day jail sentence was imposed and that was to be served immediately. But the probation period also began immediately. Thus, the potential problems to be cured by our decision in Yates simply are not present. Jones knew, as do we, precisely when the term of probation was to begin and end. (Jones, 811 P.2d at 286.) Accordingly, the Court affirmed Jones' sentence.