This opinion will be unpublished and

may not be cited except as provided by

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







State of Minnesota,


Edward Andre Washington,


Filed February 7, 2006


Wright, Judge


Hennepin County District Court

File No. 03068351



Beau D. McGraw, McGraw Law Firm, P.A., 600 Inwood Avenue North, Suite 200, Oakdale, MN  55128 (for appellant)


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


Amy Klobuchar, Hennepin County Attorney, Thomas A. Weist, Assistant County Attorney, C-2000 Government Center, 300 South Sixth Street, Minneapolis, MN  55487 (for respondent)



            Considered and decided by Halbrooks, Presiding Judge; Klaphake, Judge; and Wright, Judge.


U N P U B L I S H E D  O P I N I O N




Appellant challenges the denial of his petition to withdraw his guilty pleas, arguing that plea withdrawal is necessary to correct a manifest injustice arising from his mistaken belief that he would be eligible for the Challenge Incarceration Program.  The district court determined that appellant’s ineligibility for the program is a collateral consequence of the guilty pleas.  We affirm.



On May 19, 2004, appellant Edward Washington pleaded guilty to second-degree controlled substance possession, a violation of Minn. Stat. § 152.022, subd. 2(1) (2002); fleeing a peace officer in a motor vehicle resulting in substantial bodily harm, a violation of Minn. Stat. § 609.487, subd. 4(c) (2002); and child endangerment, a violation of Minn. Stat § 609.378, subd. 1(b)(1) (2002).  In exchange for Washington’s guilty pleas, the state dismissed five other criminal charges pending against him.

Prior to entering his guilty pleas, Washington completed a plea petition with the assistance of counsel, was advised of his constitutional rights in open court, and participated in a colloquy with the district court and Washington’s counsel to establish that Washington was entering the guilty pleas knowingly, intelligently, and voluntarily.  The plea petition and the guilty-plea hearing satisfied the requirements of Minn. R. Crim. P. 15.01.  Washington was advised that the maximum sentence that the district court could impose was 25 years’ imprisonment and a fine of $150,000. 

At the guilty-plea hearing, the state recommended a sentence of 54 months’ imprisonment.   Washington’s counsel stated that Washington understood that the district court would recommend Washington for the Challenge Incarceration Program (CIP), commonly referred to as “boot camp.”  Addressing the district court, Washington’s attorney said, “Based on what you know at this time you see no reason to not recommend that to the Commissioner of Corrections.”  In response, the district court agreed to make the recommendation and advised, “But, Mr. Washington, I’m not the final decider on that.  If you go to the institution it’s up to the Commissioner of Corrections to finally make that decision, do you know that?”  Washington replied that he understood.  Emphasizing that its role was limited to making a recommendation, the district court explained that the Commissioner of Corrections would make the final decision about Washington’s eligibility for the program. 

Washington subsequently was sentenced to 54 months’ imprisonment.  After arriving at the Minnesota Correctional Facility-St. Cloud, Washington met with his caseworker who informed him that, because he was convicted of fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle, he was ineligible for the CIP.

Washington petitioned to withdraw his guilty pleas, claiming that his guilty pleas were not intelligently made because he had been misled about his eligibility for the CIP.  The district court denied Washington’s petition, and this appeal followed.



We will reverse a district court’s determination of whether to permit withdrawal of a guilty plea only if the district court abused its discretion.  Barragan v. State, 583 N.W.2d 571, 572 (Minn. 1998).  “A defendant generally does not have an absolute right to withdraw a plea of guilty.”  State v. Rodriguez, 590 N.W.2d 823, 824 (Minn. App. 1999), review denied (Minn. May 26, 1999).  After a sentence has been imposed, a defendant may withdraw a plea of guilty only if the petition is timely and the defendant provides proof that withdrawal is necessary to correct a manifest injustice.  Minn. R. Crim. P. 15.05, subd. 1; Alanis v. State, 583 N.W.2d 573, 577 (Minn. 1998) (stating that burden of proof to establish basis for plea withdrawal rests with defendant). 

Here, there is no dispute that the petition was timely filed.  Rather, Washington argues that withdrawal of the pleas is necessary to correct a manifest injustice.  A manifest injustice is established when a guilty plea fails the constitutional requirement of being accurate, voluntary, and intelligent.  Alanis, 583 N.W.2d at 577. 

Washington contends that his guilty pleas were not intelligently made because his counsel misinformed him regarding his eligibility for the CIP.  A guilty plea is intelligently made if the defendant understands the nature of the charges, his or her rights under the law, and the direct consequences of pleading guilty.  Id.  Direct consequences are those that flow “definitely, immediately, and automatically from the guilty plea – the maximum sentence and any fine to be imposed.”  Id. at 578.  A defendant’s failure to understand a collateral consequence of pleading guilty does not entitle that defendant to withdraw the guilty plea.  Kim v. State, 434 N.W.2d 263, 266-67 (Minn. 1989). 

Washington claims that denial of admission into the CIP is a direct consequence of his guilty plea to fleeing a peace officer because the consequence arose immediately upon pleading guilty to that offense.  But caselaw does not support that assertion.  In Alanis, the Minnesota Supreme Court held that the defendant’s admission into the CIP was a collateral consequence of his guilty pleas.  583 N.W.2d at 578-79.  Pursuant to a negotiated plea agreement, Alanis pleaded guilty to offenses resulting in a maximum term of 54 months in prison so that he would be eligible for the CIP.  Id. at 576.  Before Alanis was admitted into the program, however, the Immigration and Naturalization Service lodged a detainer against him, which automatically disqualified him from the CIP.  Id.  The supreme court determined that Alanis failed to establish that his guilty pleas were not intelligently made because Alanis’s ineligibility for the CIP was not a direct consequence of the guilty pleas.  Id. at 578-79.

Washington attempts to distinguish Alanis based on when his ineligibility arose.  Washington reasons that he became ineligible when he entered a guilty plea to the disqualifying offense, rather than after a discretionary administrative action, as in AlanisSee id.  But Washington’s CIP ineligibility is based on criteria established by the Commissioner of Corrections with whom the discretion to decide which offenders may participate in the CIP rests.[1]  Ineligibility for the CIP is not a direct consequence of a guilty plea simply because a basis for disqualification arises from the nature of the offense.  Applicants must meet physical and psychological screening standards and other minimum-security guidelines.  Similar to the disqualification in Alanis, Washington’s disqualification from the CIP is the result of a discretionary decision made by an administrative authority, not the district court. 

Indeed, Washington was not guaranteed admission to the CIP.  “Although a plea of guilty may be set aside where an unqualified promise is made as a part of a plea bargain, [and is] thereafter dishonored, a solemn plea of guilty should not be set aside merely because the accused has not achieved an unwarranted hope.”  Schwerm v. State, 288 Minn. 488, 491, 181 N.W.2d 867, 868 (1970); see also State v. Ford, 397 N.W.2d 875, 883 (Minn. 1986) (stating that an unachieved, unwarranted hope is not the sort of manifest injustice that mandates plea withdrawal).  When agreeing to recommend Washington for the CIP, the district court advised that the admission decision would be made by the Commissioner of Corrections.  Without knowledge of the commissioner’s admission decision, Washington entered guilty pleas to three of the eight charges pending against him.  Washington’s guilty pleas were not the result of an unqualified promise offered by the authority charged with deciding his admission to the CIP.  Rather, he entered his guilty pleas knowing that the Commissioner of Corrections, not the district court or his attorney, would make that decision.

Accordingly, the district court correctly determined that Washington failed to prove that withdrawal of his guilty pleas is necessary to correct a manifest injustice.


[1]In his brief and at oral argument, Washington was unable to provide details on the admission restrictions for CIP applicants.  Washington has the burden of providing an adequate record to support his claims.  State v. Smith, 448 N.W.2d 550, 557 (Minn. App. 1989), review denied (Minn. Dec. 29, 1989).  Our record does not include CIP admission criteria, the history of those criteria, whether the restriction at issue here was in effect when Washington entered his guilty pleas, whether the commissioner has discretion to waive this provision, or whether any other criteria would have barred Washington’s entrance into the CIP.