Salus Populi Suprema Lex Esto
Please E-mail suggested additions, comments and/or corrections to Kent@MoreLaw.Com.
Help support the publication of case reports on MoreLaw
Anthonywan Deshawn Lacy v. The State of Texas
Case Number: No. 05-17-01004-CR No. 05-17-01005-CR
Court: Court of Appeals Fifth District of Texas at Dallas
Plaintiff's Attorney: Faith Johnson
Defendant's Attorney: John Daniel Oliphant Jr.
On July 11, 2016, Lacy was charged by indictments in two cases with one count of evading
arrest, enhanced by a previous evading arrest conviction,2 and one count of terroristic threat on a
public servant.3 On February 27, 2017, Lacy pleaded guilty to both offenses pursuant to plea
agreements, and the trial court deferred adjudication of guilt and placed Lacy on community
supervision for a period of ten years. Lacy’s community supervision was subject to various
conditions imposed by the trial court.
On June 23, 2017, the State filed a motion to proceed with an adjudication of guilt in both
cases. At the hearing on the State’s motions, Lacy pleaded not true to the State’s allegations that
he violated conditions of his community supervision. The only evidence presented at the hearing
was the testimony of Lacy’s probation officer, Tennille Walker. Walker testified Lacy violated
conditions of his community supervision by failing to pay court costs and fines, complete
community service, and participate in and comply with the rules and regulations of a substance
abuse program. Before ruling on the State’s motions, the trial court stated on the record that it
received a letter from Dr. Michael Pittman on July 27, 2017, which stated “Mr. Lacy was
competent and available to stand trial.”
After the parties rested, the trial court asked the parties, “Is there any argument [?]” The
State asked the trial court to revoke Lacy’s community supervision, find him guilty, and sentence
him to a term in prison. Lacy’s counsel told the trial court that Lacy “would have been better
served if some type of mental health evaluation was conducted prior to him being placed on
2 Cause No. F16-14506-Q 3 Cause No. F16-14507-Q
probation,” and Lacy was not “equipped with the tools to be successful on probation.” On that
basis, he asked the trial court to “take that into consideration before [rendering] a sentence.”
At the conclusion of the hearing, the trial court found Lacy violated one condition of his
community supervision and adjudicated Lacy guilty of the charges in both cases. The trial court
assessed punishment at confinement for eighteen months in Cause No. F16-14506-Q and three
years in Cause No. F16-14507-Q, to run concurrently. Before rendering judgment, the trial court
asked the parties, “Is there any legal reason why [Lacy’s] sentence[s] should not be imposed?”
Lacy’s counsel responded that his “only issue” and “only objection” to the trial court’s sentences
was that he was “not able to communicate in good faith to the court that [Lacy was] competent.”
The trial court then rendered judgment and ordered Lacy’s sentences to begin immediately.
Without filing a motion for new trial, Lacy filed this appeal of the trial court’s judgments.
In his first issue, Lacy contends the trial court erred by failing to conduct a punishment
hearing separate from the hearing on the State’s motions to proceed with an adjudication of guilt.
Lacy argues, “[a]lthough the record indicated [he] did not object to the lack of a punishment
hearing, he was not provided the opportunity to lodge an objection. The trial court quickly moved
from adjudication to sentencing.”
If the trial court assesses punishment in connection with an adjudication of guilt, it must
provide the defendant an opportunity to present punishment evidence or object to the sentence.
Issa v. State, 826 S.W.2d 159, 161 (Tex. Crim App. 1992) (a defendant “is entitled to a punishment
hearing after the adjudication of guilt, and the trial judge must allow the accused the opportunity
to present evidence.”); see also Pearson v. State, 994 S.W.2d 176, 178 (Tex. Crim. App. 1999).
However, a defendant is not entitled to a separate hearing on punishment. Euler v. State, 218
S.W.3d 88, 92 (Tex. Crim. App. 2007). If not afforded an opportunity to present punishment
evidence or object to the trial court’s imposition of a sentence, a defendant may preserve a
complaint on sentencing for appellate review by filing a motion for new trial. Pearson, 994 S.W.2d
at 178. See also TEX. R. APP. P. 33.1(a) (a criminal defendant must timely object to preserve a
complaint for review).
Here, after announcing Lacy’s sentences but before rendering judgment, the trial court
asked the parties if there was any legal reason the sentences should not be imposed. The “only
objection” to the sentences raised by Lacy’s counsel was that he could not “communicate in good
faith to the Court that [Lacy] is competent.” At no time did Lacy ask to present evidence.
If appellant wanted an opportunity to present evidence and argument on the question of punishment, it was incumbent upon him to ask for that opportunity and to be ready to present such evidence and argument as soon as the trial court announced its finding that he had violated the conditions of his probation. Part of being prepared for a revocation hearing is being prepared to present evidence and argument on the question of the proper disposition in the event that the trial court finds that the conditions of probation have been violated.
Euler, 218 S.W.3d at 91. Furthermore, Lacy did not file a motion for new trial.
We conclude Lacy failed to request an opportunity to present evidence on punishment,
failed to timely object to the trial court’s imposition of punishment on the ground he desired to
present punishment evidence, and failed to file a motion for new trial on the ground the trial court
did not conduct a punishment hearing separate from the hearing on the State’s motion to proceed
with an adjudication of guilt. Accordingly, we conclude Lacy has not preserved his complaint for
appellate review. We resolve Lacy’s first issue against him.
Modification of Judgment
In his second issue, Lacy requests that we modify the trial court’s judgments to accurately
reflect he pleaded not true to the State’s allegations in both motions to proceed with an adjudication
of guilt. The State joins in Lacy’s request. The trial court’s judgments in this case reflect Lacy
pleaded true to the allegations in the State’s motions to proceed with an adjudication of guilt, but
the record reflects he pleaded not true. We may modify a trial court’s written judgment to correct
a clerical error when we have the necessary information to do so. See Asberry v. State, 813 S.W.2d
526, 529–30 (Tex. App.–Dallas 1991, pet. ref'd); see also TEX. R. APP. P. 43.2(b).4 Accordingly,
we modify the trial court’s judgments in both cases to reflect Lacy pleaded not true to the
allegations in the State’s motions to proceed with an adjudication of guilt.
Outcome: As modified, we affirm the trial court’s judgments.