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Date: 04-13-2019

Case Style:

Joseph M. Hawk v. State of Indiana

Case Number: 18A-CR-2250

Judge: Tim A. Baker

Court: COURT OF APPEALS OF INDIANA

Plaintiff's Attorney: Ellen H. Meilaender
Deputy Attorney General

Defendant's Attorney: Laura A. Raiman
R. Patrick Magrath
Matthew T. Bates

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In December 2016, Hawk was serving time in community corrections following
two drug-related convictions in two separate causes. On December 8, 2016,
Hawk reported to community corrections and appeared to be intoxicated.
Officers found suboxone in Hawk’s wallet and pill bottles, a glass pipe with a
white residue, and a bindle containing methamphetamine in his car. On
January 19, 2017, the State charged Hawk with Level 6 felony possession of
methamphetamine and Class A misdemeanor possession of a controlled
substance under Cause Number 03D01-1701-F6-389 (Cause F6-389).
[3] On March 30, 2017, Hawk sold methamphetamine to a confidential informant
for $200. The same day, the State charged him with Level 4 felony dealing in
methamphetamine under Cause Number 03D01-1803-F4-1519 (Cause F4
1519). On April 18, 2018, the trial court granted Hawk’s motion to reduce
bond and released him on his own recognizance to pretrial release through
community corrections. He entered the Lighthouse Recovery program in April
Court of Appeals of Indiana | Memorandum Decision 18A-CR-2250 | April 12, 2019 Page 3 of 7

and received ninety days of treatment there, but he left before the program was
finished and did not return.
[4] On June 12, 2018, Hawk left community corrections without permission. He
consumed methamphetamine and then struck his then-girlfriend, Diana
Rousey, in the face five to seven times. Rousey sustained a concussion, a
laceration over her eye, a broken nose, and bruising and swelling all over her
face. Hawk threatened to beat her twice as hard if she called the police. When
police officers came to the residence later that day, Hawk fled and had to be
tasered before he obeyed commands to stop. On June 13, 2018, the State
charged him with Class A misdemeanor domestic battery and Class A
misdemeanor resisting law enforcement under Cause Number 03D01-1806
CM-3265 (Cause CM-3265).
[5] Hawk resolved all three causes through a plea agreement, pursuant to which he
pleaded guilty to Level 6 felony possession of methamphetamine under Cause
F6-389, the lesser-included offense of Level 5 felony dealing in
methamphetamine under Cause F4-1519, and Class A misdemeanor domestic
battery under Cause CM-3265. The State dismissed the other charges.
[6] At the August 31, 2018, sentencing hearing, the trial court found no mitigators
and found the following aggravators: Hawk’s criminal history; his failed
opportunities on probation and multiple revocations; his many unsuccessful
opportunities to receive substance abuse treatment; his violation of pretrial
release in Cause F4-1519; and the fact that he was on probation and pretrial
Court of Appeals of Indiana | Memorandum Decision 18A-CR-2250 | April 12, 2019 Page 4 of 7

release when he committed the offense in Cause CM-3265. The trial court
imposed consecutive sentences of two years, five years, and one year,
respectively, on his convictions for possession of methamphetamine, dealing in
methamphetamine, and domestic battery. Hawk now appeals.
Discussion and Decision
[7] Hawk’s sole argument on appeal is that the sentences imposed by the trial court
are inappropriate in light of the nature of the offenses and his character.
Indiana Appellate Rule 7(B) provides that this Court may revise a sentence if it
is inappropriate in light of the nature of the offense and the character of the
offender. We must “conduct [this] review with substantial deference and give
‘due consideration’ to the trial court’s decision—since the ‘principal role of
[our] review is to attempt to leaven the outliers,’ and not to achieve a perceived
‘correct’ sentence . . . .” Knapp v. State, 9 N.E.3d 1274, 1292 (Ind. 2014)
(quoting Chambers v. State, 989 N.E.2d 1257, 1259 (Ind. 2013)) (internal
citations omitted).
[8] Hawk pleaded guilty to a Level 5 felony, a Level 6 felony, and a Class A
misdemeanor. For the Level 5 felony, he faced a term of one to six years, with
an advisory term of three years, Ind. Code § 35-50-2-6(b); the trial court
imposed a five-year term. For the Level 6 felony, Hawk faced a term of six
months to two and one-half years, with an advisory term of one year, I.C. § 35
50-2-7(b); the trial court imposed a two-year term. And for the Class A
misdemeanor, Hawk faced a term of up to one year, I.C. § 35-50-3-2; the trial
Court of Appeals of Indiana | Memorandum Decision 18A-CR-2250 | April 12, 2019 Page 5 of 7

court imposed a one-year term. The trial court was required to run the
sentences consecutively, I.C. § 35-50-1-2(e), so Hawk received an aggregate
eight-year term.
[9] With respect to the nature of the offenses, we are not limited to the factual basis
of Hawk’s guilty pleas but may instead consider the full nature of his criminal
conduct. Bethea v. State, 983 N.E.2d 1134, 1145 (Ind. 2013). In Cause F6-389,
Hawk was found in possession of methamphetamine, another controlled
substance, and paraphernalia, and appeared intoxicated, all while serving a
sentence for substance-related convictions in community corrections. He then
lied to community corrections officers to try to evade detection.
[10] In Cause F4-1519, Hawk possessed more methamphetamine than was
necessary to constitute the Level 5 felony to which he pleaded guilty. He
committed this offense while on probation for an earlier conviction and only
twenty days after being released on bond for the charges in Cause F6-389.
Moreover, he blamed his girlfriend at the time for the crime, claiming that he
was only acting as a middle man for her.
[11] In Cause CM-3265, Hawk severely battered his girlfriend, hitting her multiple
times in the face while he was high on methamphetamine. As a result, she
sustained a concussion, a broken nose, a laceration over her eye, and bruising
and swelling all over her face. When the police came to the house, he fled, only
stopping after he was tasered. He committed these offenses while on probation
for an earlier conviction and on pretrial release in Cause F4-1519, and he
Court of Appeals of Indiana | Memorandum Decision 18A-CR-2250 | April 12, 2019 Page 6 of 7

blamed his girlfriend for the incident, claiming that he was the victim in what
had happened.
[12] Each of these offenses individually had aggravating aspects going beyond that
to which he pleaded guilty. And the overall pattern shows repetitive criminal
activity that is undeterred by any contact with the criminal justice system. As
soon as Hawk is released back into the community, he begins committing new
crimes. We do not find that the nature of the offenses supports his argument.
[13] With respect to his character, he began committing felony-level crimes as a
juvenile, receiving adjudications for auto theft and residential entry, and has
continued unabated through adulthood. He has amassed prior felony
convictions for burglary, dealing in cocaine, possession of marijuana,
possession of methamphetamine, and operating with a controlled substance in
the body. He also has numerous misdemeanor convictions, including operating
while intoxicated and conversion.
[14] Hawk has been given countless prior opportunities on probation but has
repeatedly violated and been revoked. He has also had many chances to receive
substance abuse treatment, including in these very cases before he was
sentenced, but he has failed to take advantage of these opportunities and has
instead continued to use drugs and commit crimes. He does not take
responsibility for his own actions, blaming his mother for his drug addiction
and his girlfriends or his substance abuse problems for the crimes he commits.
He has even had drug-related deaths in his life—his mother died from an
Court of Appeals of Indiana | Memorandum Decision 18A-CR-2250 | April 12, 2019 Page 7 of 7

overdose a decade ago and his wife died from an overdose in 2016—but even
those losses have not motivated him to reform his behavior and take advantage
of the help he desperately needs.
[15] The judicial system has offered Hawk leniency for years but he continues to
engage in criminal behavior each and every time he is released into the
community. Under these circumstances, we do not find the sentences imposed
by the trial court are inappropriate in light of the nature of the offenses and his
character.

Outcome: The judgment of the trial court is affirmed.

Plaintiff's Experts:

Defendant's Experts:

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