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State v. Allen

Court of Appeals of Iowa

May 17, 2017

STATE OF IOWA, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
JIMMY LEE ALLEN, Defendant-Appellant.

         Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Robert J. Blink, Judge.

         Defendant appeals the district court's order denying his motion to correct an illegal sentence. AFFIRMED.

          Erin M. Carr of Carr & Wright, P.L.C., Des Moines, for appellant. Jimmy L. Allen, Anamosa, appellant pro se.

          Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, and Louis S. Sloven, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee.

          Considered by Danilson, C.J., Bower, J., and Goodhue, S.J.

          GOODHUE, Senior Judge.

         Jimmy Lee Allen appeals the district court's order denying his motion to correct an illegal sentence, and he raises an issue concerning restitution. We affirm the decision of the district court.

         I. Factual and Procedural Background

         Allen was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison without parole in 1982. Allen appealed his conviction, and the conviction was affirmed. In summarizing the factual background upon which the conviction was based, the Iowa Supreme Court stated:

Welling's body was found lying in a pool of blood in the living room of his home on the morning of March 6, 1982 by his brother. The medical examiner who testified for the State at defendant's trial determined that the cause of death was loss of blood from multiple stab wounds in the neck, chest, abdomen, and back. The victim had also been severely beaten about the head and face.

State v. Allen, 348 N.W.2d 243, 245 (Iowa 1984).

         It developed that Allen was one of the group that formed a plan to rob Welling, and in order to avoid identification, the group decided it was necessary that Welling be killed. Id. Allen was twenty-one years and ten months of age at the time of the murder. Allen contends a life sentence without parole is cruel and unusual punishment as a mandatory sentence for anyone who is under twenty-five years of age at the time of the offense and the mandatory sentence he received should be deemed unconstitutional under both the federal and state constitution as a violation of the prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.

         In a pro se brief, Allen also contends error was committed by the district court when it dismissed his application to show cause why $1214.40 of his inmate account allegedly charged for attorney fees should not be returned to him with interest.

         II. ...


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