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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Nov 14, 2012

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

John E. Herbison, Clarksville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Celso V. Melendez.

Attorneys 2:

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Clark B. Thornton, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, III, District Attorney General; and Roger Moore, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge(s): OGLE

The Petitioner, Celso V. Melendez, appeals the post-conviction court’s denial of his petition for post-conviction relief from his guilty pleas to two counts of facilitation to deliver over 300 grams of cocaine and resulting effective sentence of twenty-four years. On appeal, the Petitioner contends that he received the ineffective assistance of counsel because his guilty pleas were based upon trial counsel’s assurance that he would be eligible for the boot camp program. Based upon the oral arguments, the record, and the parties’ briefs, we conclude that the Petitioner received the ineffective assistance of counsel. Therefore, the judgment of the post-conviction court is reversed, the judgments of conviction are vacated, and the case is remanded for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.