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State v. Petersen

Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division

October 30, 2013

STATE OF NEW JERSEY, Plaintiff-Respondent,
v.
SHAWN PETERSEN, Defendant-Appellant.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE[1] DIVISION

Submitted October 15, 2013

On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Passaic County, Indictment No. 99-06-0592.

Joseph E. Krakora, Public Defender, attorney for appellant (Abby P. Schwartz, Designated Counsel, on the brief).

Camelia M. Valdes, Passaic County Prosecutor, attorney for respondent (Christopher W. Hsieh, Chief Assistant Prosecutor, of counsel and on the brief).

Appellant filed a pro se supplemental brief.

Before Judges Harris and Guadagno.

PER CURIAM

Defendant Shawn Petersen appeals from the July 6, 2010 order of the Law Division denying his petition for post-conviction relief (PCR). We agree with the PCR court that defendant did not suffer ineffective assistance of counsel, however, we remand for resentencing with the consent of the State.[2]

During a two-week period between the end of January and beginning of February 1999, defendant committed numerous armed robberies. Two of the robberies took place in Bergen County, eight to ten took place in Hudson County, and two took place in Passaic County. Defendant was indicted and prosecuted in each county.

In Bergen County, defendant pled guilty to two counts of first-degree robbery and was sentenced on November 12, 1999, to concurrent, eighteen-year terms, each with a parole ineligibility term, as required by the No Early Release Act (NERA), N.J.S.A. 2C:43-7.2.

Defendant also pled guilty in Hudson County and on November 16, 1999, he received concurrent fifteen-year sentences. The Bergen and Hudson sentences ran concurrent with each other.

Defendant resolved the Passaic County charges last by pleading guilty to two counts of first-degree armed robbery. On August 4, 2000, the court found defendant qualified for an extended term by virtue of his prior convictions in Hudson and Bergen counties, and imposed two concurrent twenty-five-year prison terms, to run concurrent with his Bergen and Hudson County sentences. As to both terms, defendant's judgment of conviction provided: "Pursuant to NO EARLY RELEASE ACT – 85% LAW APPLIES."

Defendant filed PCR petitions in all three counties raising similar claims. In Bergen County, defendant argued that his petition, filed on February 20, 2009, should not be time-barred. Defendant also claimed he was denied the effective assistance of trial counsel because his attorney failed to file a motion to consolidate the charges ...


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