Williams v. Mississippi

J. C. Williams was convicted of the sale of cocaine. He was adjudicated a habitual offender and a subsequent drug offender, and as such, his sentence was enhanced to forty years in the custody of the Department of Corrections (MDOC), with thirty years to serve and ten years suspended. On appeal, Williams argued that the circuit court "erred in amending the indictment to charge him as a habitual offender." The Court of Appeals rejected that argument and affirmed. Following that denial, Williams filed a pro se petition for the writ of certiorari, which was granted. The Supreme Court found that Williams was provided adequate notice in advance of trial that, upon conviction, the State intended to seek enhanced punishment under Section 99-19-81. However, the State failed to provide adequate notice of its intent to seek enhanced punishment under Section 41-29-147. Thus, the Court affirmed in part and reversed in part the judgments of the Court of Appeals and the Circuit Court and remanded this case for a new sentencing hearing, where Williams was to be resentenced as a habitual offender under Section 99-19-81 only. View "Williams v. Mississippi" on Justia Law