This opinion will be unpublished and
may not be cited except as provided by
Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (2006).
IN COURT OF APPEALS
Joseph Edwin Harju,
State of Minnesota,
Filed June 26, 2007
St. Louis County District Court
File No. K3-00-600363
Joseph E. Harju, OID #205468, 7525 Fourth Avenue, Lino Lakes, MN 55014-1099 (pro se appellant)
Swanson, Attorney General, 1800
Ford, St. Louis County Attorney, John E. De Santo, Assistant
Considered and decided by Chief Judge Toussaint, Presiding Judge; Lansing, Judge; and Peterson, Judge.
U N P U B L I S H E D O P I N I O N
In this appeal from an order denying a petition for postconviction relief, appellant argues that (1) his guilty plea was involuntary, (2) his sentence was not authorized by law, and (3) the district court’s failure to comply with Minn. Stat. § 244.101, subd. 2 (1998), when sentencing appellant deprived the district court of jurisdiction to sentence appellant. We affirm.
In March 2000, appellant Joseph Edwin Harju was charged with two counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct in violation of Minn. Stat. § 609.344, subd. 1(b) (1998). The charges were based on two separate incidents of criminal sexual conduct with the same victim. In May 2000, appellant pleaded guilty to both counts. Appellant’s plea petition states:
In exchange for my plea of guilty to 2 counts of criminal sexual conduct in the 3rd degree amended from 609.344, subd. 1(d) to subd. 1(b) [which reduces the severity level from level VII to level V], the parties agree to a guideline sentence (with the state asking for consecutive and [appellant] for concurrent).
Appellant moved to disallow an
In July 2000, the district court imposed two 36-month sentences, to be served consecutively, and a ten-year conditional-release period. In August 2001, appellant moved to withdraw his guilty plea, alleging newly discovered evidence and ineffective assistance of counsel. The motion was denied. In January 2005, appellant moved to modify his conditional-release period, and in February 2005, the district court ordered that appellant’s ten-year conditional-release period be modified to a five-year period. In August 2005, appellant filed a petition for postconviction relief in which he asked to be allowed to withdraw his guilty plea, or, alternatively, that his sentence be vacated and that he be resentenced to concurrent sentences or that his sentence and conditional-release period be modified to time served. Following a hearing, the district court denied the petition. This appeal followed.
D E C I S I O N
“A petition for postconviction relief is a collateral
attack on a judgment which carries a presumption of regularity and which,
therefore, cannot be lightly set aside.”
Pederson v. State, 649 N.W.2d
161, 163 (
1. Withdrawal of Plea
To be valid, a guilty plea “must be accurate, voluntary and
intelligent (i.e., knowingly and understandingly made).” State
v. Ecker, 524 N.W.2d 712, 716 (
argues that his guilty plea was involuntary
because, when he entered the plea, he was not aware that a conditional-release period
would be included in his sentence. “The requirement that the
plea be knowingly and understandingly made is designed to insure that the
defendant understands the charges, the rights being waived and the consequences
of the guilty plea.” Brown v.
State, 449 N.W.2d 180, 182 (
At the plea hearing, the prosecutor said:
I would also state for the record that it will be our position that Minnesota Statute 609.109, Subdivision 2 is applicable here. That calls for a minimum sentence of three years.
. . . .
. . . And there will also be, of course, applicable of Subdivision 7, a conditional-release period for sexual offenders. But that’s a mandatory circumstance as well.
Immediately after the prosecutor referred to the conditional-release period, the district court asked appellant if it was his intent to accept the agreement and plead guilty to the amended complaint and whether he understood that the amendment reduced the severity level of the offense. Appellant answered, “Yes, [y]our honor.”
State v. Rhodes, the defendant
pleaded guilty with the understanding that he would receive a maximum executed
sentence of 105 months. 675 N.W.2d 323 (
appellant, the defendant in
The circumstances under which the conditional-release term was included in appellant’s sentence provide less reason to conclude that appellant’s plea was not intelligent than was present in Rhodes because the state referred to the mandatory conditional-release term in appellant’s presence at the plea hearing before appellant pleaded guilty. Therefore, appellant received notice of the conditional-release term before he entered his plea, and neither he nor his counsel objected.
The postconviction court could infer from appellant’s failure to object at the plea hearing or the sentencing hearing that appellant understood at the time he entered his plea that the conditional-release term would be imposed. The district court did not abuse its discretion in denying appellant’s request to withdraw his plea.
2. Sentence not authorized by law
Appellant argues that under his plea agreement, he was promised a sentence in accordance with the sentencing guidelines in exchange for his guilty plea on two counts, and the district court failed to impose a presumptive guidelines sentence. Appellant contends that the sentence he received is not a presumptive guidelines sentence because the consecutive sentences imposed are not authorized by law when both offenses were committed against the same person and were part of the same course of conduct.
Citing Spann v. State, 704 N.W.2d 486, 488 n.1 (
also argues that his consecutive sentences are unlawful because the state’s
over-use and over-counting of his single
was convicted of two counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct within 15
years of his
3. Failure to comply with
Appellant argues that because the district court failed to adhere to the requirements of Minn. Stat. § 244.101, subd. 2 (1998), when sentencing appellant, the district court did not have jurisdiction to sentence him. That statute states:
When a court pronounces an executed sentence under this section, it shall explain: (1) the total length of the executed sentence; (2) the amount of time the defendant will serve in prison; and (3) the amount of time the defendant will serve on supervised release, assuming the defendant commits no disciplinary offense in prison that results in the imposition of a disciplinary confinement period. The court shall also explain that the amount of time the defendant actually serves in prison may be extended by the commissioner if the defendant commits any disciplinary offenses in prison and that this extension could result in the defendant’s serving the entire executed sentence in prison. The court’s explanation shall be included in a written summary of the sentence.
Minn. Stat. § 244.101, subd. 2 (emphasis added).
Appellant correctly states that
under the canons of statutory construction, “shall” is mandatory. See
When a statute does not explicitly
declare the consequences of a failure to comply with the statute, we construe
the language as directory only. Carl Bolander & Sons Co. v. City of
Minneapolis, 488 N.W.2d 804, 809-10 (Minn. App. 1992), aff’d, 502 N.W.2d 203 (
 The statement in brackets is in the original plea petition.
 A plea is voluntary if it is not made in response to improper pressures or inducements. Alanis,583 N.W.2d at 577. Appellant does not identify any improper pressures or inducements that prompted his guilty plea. However, the gist of appellant’s argument is that he did not know the consequences of his plea when he pleaded guilty. Therefore, although appellant claims that his plea was involuntary, we will analyze the claim as if appellant had claimed that his plea was not knowingly and understandingly made.
 This statement is quoted in part in Spann. 704 N.W.2d at 488 n.1.