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160657 - Desmond Ricks v State of Michigan

Desmond Ricks,

 

Sima Patel

 

Plaintiff-Appellant,

 

v

(Appeal from Ct of Appeals)

 

 

(Ct. Claims – Talbot, M.)

 

State of Michigan,

 

Eric Restuccia

 

Defendant-Appellee.

 

Summary

In 1992, the plaintiff was on parole from his 1987 convictions for armed robbery and assault with intent to rob while armed when he was wrongfully convicted of second-degree murder and felony-firearm.  His parole was revoked as a result.  From October 13, 1992, to February 8, 1997, plaintiff served his remaining sentence on his 1987 convictions.  He began serving his prison sentences for second-degree murder and felony-firearm on February 9, 1997.  In 2017, new evidence revealed that the plaintiff did not commit the second-degree murder and felony-firearm offenses.  These convictions were vacated, and the prosecution ultimately dismissed the charges.  The plaintiff was released from prison on May 26, 2017.  In June 2017, the plaintiff filed a complaint in the Court of Claims seeking compensation under the Wrongful Imprisonment Compensation Act (WICA), MCL 691.1751 et seq.  Both sides stipulated that the plaintiff is entitled to a $1,014,657.53 judgment, plus costs and attorney fees, for the time he served from February 9, 1997, to May 26, 2017.  But the Court of Claims held that the plaintiff is not entitled to an additional $216,438.36 in compensation for time served from October 13, 1992, to February 8, 1997, stemming from the parole violation because MCL 691.1755(4) states: “Compensation may not be awarded under subsection (2) for any time during which the plaintiff was imprisoned under a concurrent or consecutive sentence for another conviction.”  The Court of Appeals affirmed in a 2-1 published opinion.  The Supreme Court has ordered oral argument on the application to address whether the Court of Appeals erred in holding that MCL 691.1755(4) applies in this case to bar the plaintiff from recovering wrongful conviction compensation based on a concurrent or consecutive conviction where the plaintiff was on parole for an earlier crime when he was wrongfully convicted, and his parole was revoked based on the wrongful conviction.​