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State v. Lewis

447 S.E.2d 570 (1994)

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State v. Lewis

West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals

447 S.E.2d 570 (1994)

Facts

Mabel Lewis (defendant) stole $8.83 in groceries from a West Virginia grocery store. Lewis was convicted of shoplifting by the Circuit Court of Mercer County. This was Lewis’s third conviction for shoplifting. At the time, West Virginia’s criminal code required that upon a third or subsequent shoplifting conviction, regardless of the value of the stolen goods, a defendant be subject to a sentence of one to 10 years in prison and a fine of $500 to $5,000. The statute specifically precluded the possibility of parole and therefore implicitly prohibited consideration of alternative sentencing. Accordingly, Lewis was sentenced to an indeterminate term of one to 10 years in prison and fined $500. Lewis appealed, citing the trial court’s failure to permit alternative sentencing.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Workman, J.)

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