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State v. Mr. M. (DMC No. 10310)


Mr. M. pled guilty to two counts of Attempted Child Prostitution. Despite the fact that Mr. M. was adamant during the change of plea proceedings that he did not know the alleged victim was under the age of 18, the Court accepted his pleas of guilty and sentenced Mr. M. to five (5) years of supervised probation. Along with the probation term, Mr. M. was required to serve one (1) year in the Maricopa County Jail and was mandated to register as a sex offender, a lifetime requirement. During the time that Mr. M. was serving his one year jail sentence, he retained the services of DM Cantor in order to file a Petition for Post Conviction Relief, pursuant to Rule 32 of the Arizona Rules of Criminal Procedure. Our firm filed this petition with the sentencing judge on Mr. M.’s behalf, arguing that the crime of child prostitution is not a strict liability offense and given Mr. M.’s clear statements that he did not know that the alleged victim was under the age of 18, the conviction should be reversed based on an insufficient factual basis. After this request was denied by the sentencing judge, we took the issue to the Court of Appeals by filing a Petition for Review of the Superior Courts Denial of Post Conviction Relief. After review of the pleadings, the Court of Appeals and the State agreed with our position that there was not a sufficient factual basis to support the guilty pleas and thus, the conviction was reversed and the case was remanded back to the Superior Court for a new trial. Once remanded, and based on the arguments set forth in the post conviction pleadings, the State filed a motion to dismiss the case with prejudice, which was granted by the Court. After this dismissal, our firm was successful in having Mr. M.’s arrest record cleared after we filed a Motion to Clear Mr. M.’s Arrest Record pursuant to A.R.S. §13-4051.


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