This opinion will be unpublished and

may not be cited except as provided by

Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (2004).






State of Minnesota,





Jason Tyrell Lee,



Filed August 23, 2005


Kalitowski, Judge


Hennepin County District Court

File No. 04044886


Mike Hatch, Attorney General, 1800 Bremer Tower, 445 Minnesota Street, St. Paul, MN 55101-2134; and


Amy Klobuchar, Hennepin County Attorney, Thomas A. Weist, Assistant County Attorney, C-2000 Government Center, Minneapolis, MN 55487 (for appellant)


Leonardo Castro, Hennepin County Public Defender, Peter W. Gorman, Assistant Public Defender, 317 Second Avenue South, Suite 200, Minneapolis, MN 55401 (for respondent)


            Considered and decided by Randall, Presiding Judge; Kalitowski, Judge; and Worke, Judge.

U N P U B L I S H E D   O P I N I O N


            Appellant State of Minnesota challenges respondent’s stayed sentence for a conviction of second-degree controlled-substance possession, arguing that the district court improperly negotiated a sentence with respondent over appellant’s objection.  We affirm.



            “[A] sentencing court has no discretion to depart from the sentencing guidelines unless aggravating or mitigating factors are present.”  State v. Spain, 590 N.W.2d 85, 88 (Minn. 1999).  “When a district court departs [from the sentencing guidelines], it must articulate substantial and compelling reasons justifying the departure.”  State v. Schmit, 601 N.W.2d 896, 898 (Minn. 1999).  “If no reasons supporting the departure are stated on the record, the departure is not allowed; if reasons are stated, but are improper or inadequate, this court will affirm the departure nonetheless if the record contains valid and sufficient reasons to support the departure.”  State v. Sanchez-Sanchez, 654 N.W.2d 690, 694 (Minn. App. 2002).

            Here, appellant argues that the district court improperly negotiated a stayed sentence with respondent over appellant’s objection.  Appellant asserts that the district court offered respondent a stayed sentence in exchange for information about respondent’s drug source during a pretrial proceeding and that the court’s offer was valid until the date of respondent’s trial.  We disagree.

            Although at a prior hearing there was discussion by the court of a downward departure in exchange for information, the record of the plea hearing indicates that the district court accepted respondent’s “straight plea” of guilty.  The court then sentenced respondent, departing from the presumptive sentence because of respondent’s “amenability to probation.”  The record further indicates that the district court did not require respondent to provide his drug source under oath prior to pleading guilty.

            As required, the district court offered appropriate reasons for its departure.  See Schmit, 601 N.W.2d at 898.  The court indicated that it would impose a downward departure because of respondent’s “amenability to probation.”  A dispositional departure in the form of probation may be imposed instead of an executed sentence if a defendant is particularly amenable to probation.  State v. Trog, 323 N.W.2d 28, 31 (Minn. 1982).  On appeal, the state does not contend respondent is not amenable to probation.  And the record indicates that respondent had completed treatment, finished aftercare, become employed and engaged, and volunteered in the community.  Further, when respondent addressed the district court, he apologized and indicated that he had moved on with his life and reformed himself.  On this record, we cannot conclude that the district court abused its discretion.