Court Opinions

Echols v. State
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (5/2/2000, 6/16/2000) A00A0583

CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Res Judicata

Alert: Res judicata barred the defendant's claim that his sentences were void.

Subject Matter Index: Appeal of denial of petition to correct void sentences dismissed; res judicata barred defendant's claim that court considered improper matters in sentencing him on guilty pleas to armed robbery and aggravated assault, as defendant raised that claim in prior appeal.

Headnote: The Court of Appeals dismissed Curtis Echols' appeal of the denial of his petition to correct void sentences, holding that res judicata barred Echols' claim that the trial court considered improper matters in sentencing him on his guilty pleas to armed robbery and aggravated assault since Echols raised that claim in his prior appeal.

Text: McMurray, William Leroy, Chief Judge

On August 17, 1987, defendant entered negotiated pleas of guilty to three counts of armed robbery and two counts of aggravated assault. Following a hearing, the superior court accepted the pleas and sentenced defendant thereon. Subsequently, the defendant, pro se, appealed the superior court's denial of his motion for an out-of-time appeal. In Echols v. State,1 we affirmed, concluding, among other things, that the superior court did not consider improper matters in fixing his sentencing. In two enumerations of error in the case sub judice, defendant, pro se, again raises the foregoing claim of error upon the superior court's denial of his petition to correct void sentences, filed in the superior court after this court's judgment as to his first appeal.

It is axiomatic that the same issue cannot be relitigated ad infinitum. The same is true of appeals of the same issue on the same grounds. Our determination in the earlier appeal is res judicata; the instant appeal is therefore barred, and we are without jurisdiction to review this same matter for a second time.2

Appeal dismissed. Johnson, C. J. and Phipps, J. concur.

1231 Ga. App. 501 (498 SE2d 66).

2(Citations and punctuation omitted.) Stirling v. State, 199 Ga. App. 877 (406 SE2d 282).

Trial Judge: Robert J. James, Douglas Superior Court.,

Attorneys: Curtis Echols, Sparta, proceeded pro se. James D. McDade, District Attorney, Douglasville, for appellee.,