What happens after a void sentence? In this case, defendant’s postconviction petition is dismissed. But the sentence was void.
He should not have been sentenced as a class X offender since he was under 21 years of age.
People v. Douglas, 2014 IL App (4th) 120617 (07/02/2014).
Mandatory X Sentencing
The Unified Code of Corrections (730 ILCS 5/5-5-3(c)(8)) allows for mandatory X sentencing if an individual is over 21 years of age.
The key question in this case was with regard to section 5-5-3(c)(8). What is the point in time at which a defendant’s age should be considered?
Should his age be calculated from the time of the offense, the time he was charged, the time he was found guilty, or the time he was sentenced?
For more Illinois sentencing opinions check out the Illinois Sentencing Page
O.K. He Was Under 21, Now What?
In this case, the interpretation favoring the accused places the date for determining a person’s age for purposes of section 5-5-3(c)(8) on the date he is charged. Because defendant was not 21 when he was charged, he was not eligible for a Class X sentence pursuant to section 5-5-3(c)(8).
What Happens After a Void Sentence?
A court lacks authority to impose a sentence that fails to conform with statutory guidelines.
If a court exceeds its sentencing authority, the sentence imposed is illegal and void. The fact the State and the defendant agreed to a sentence outside of what is allowed by statute does not mean the sentence is valid.
The court ruled that both parties had a right to receive the benefits they negotiated in the plea deal. They should be made whole if the law allows it.
The case was remanded to the trial court for a new sentencing hearing.