Appeal from the 176th District Court Harris County, Texas
Trial Court Case Nos. 1450537 & 1489379
consists of Chief Justice Radack and Justices Keyes and
Radack Chief Justice
Trevion Mason and several other defendants were arrested
during a sting operation, accused of participating in a
scheme to steal multiple kilos of cocaine. Appellant was
indicted on four charges, i.e., possession with intent to
deliver over 400 grams of cocaine,  two counts of engaging in
organized criminal conduct,  and assault of a public
servant. He pleaded guilty to possession with
intent to deliver and engaging in organized criminal
activity, and he was sentenced to 20 years' confinement.
challenges the voluntariness of his plea based on allegedly
incorrect admonishments about the availability of probation.
Appellant Formally Rejects Plea-Bargain Offers and
Proceeds to Trial
16, 2016, the trial court called appellant to trial on all
four charged counts. Before the jury was brought in to the
courtroom, appellant confirmed on the record that his
attorney had conveyed to him the State's plea-bargain
offers and that appellant rejected the offers. When queried,
appellant described for the court the State's offers he
was rejecting: "One was 35 years, and the last one was a
State then announced ready and its intention to proceed at
trial on only one of appellant's charges, i.e., engaging
in organized criminal activity. The court then explained to
appellant that-with enhancement allegations and a prior
conviction-the charge carried a sentence range of "15
years up to life":
Q. All right. On 1489379, that's an engaging, it's a
first degree felony as alleged, there's a deadly weapon
allegation, and then there's a prior conviction. It's
alleged, Mr. Mason, that you were convicted in the 263rd of
assault family violence back in 2011 on Cause No. 1299268.
With that enhancement your range of punishment, if
they're able to prove it and you're found guilty,
your range of punishment would be a minimum of 15 years up to
life in prison. Is that what you understand?
A. Yes, ma'am.
then confirmed, again, that he was rejecting the State's
35-year offer. But appellant told the court that the State
had not previously told him that it was proceeding to trial
on only one charge: "I thought they was going to proceed
on four cases, that's why I didn't accept the
State clarified that, under its "PSI offer, " the
State would dismiss the assault-on-a-public-servant charge
and one of the original
engaging-in-organized-criminal-activity charges. Appellant
would then be required to plead guilty to both the remaining
engaging-in-organized-criminal-activity count and the charge
of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance
over 400 grams. This was the same offer that had been made to
appellant's co-defendants, and accepted.
stated again that he was rejecting the State's offer. The
court called a break for appellant to get ready for trial and
for the court to seat the jury.
Appellant Changes his Mind and Accepts State's
the proceedings were back on the record, a plea agreement had
been reached. The record picks back up with the court stating
that the proceedings were on the record to reflect that the
State was proceeding on two cases against appellant, (1)
possession with intent to deliver and (2) engaging in
organized criminal activity. Because both charges were
accompanied by an enhancement paragraph, appellant was asked
whether he would plead true to a prior conviction on a 2011
charge of "assault - family violence." Appellant
confirmed the prior conviction, pleading true.
Written Plea and Admonishments
the break, appellant had signed two sets of documents related
to his guilty plea on the two charges. Among other things,
each packet contained a "Waiver of Constitutional
Rights, Agreement to Stipulate, and Judicial Confession,
" and a written admonishment of appellant's rights.
written admonishment on the
engaging-in-organized-criminal-activity specified that
"the punishment range is confinement in prison for 15
years to life and a fine of up to $10, 000." The written
admonishment on the possession-with-intent-to-deliver charge
specified that "the punishment range is confinement in
prison for 15 to 99 years or life and a mandatory fine of up
to $250, 000."
written admonishments in both cases state:
The only type of community supervision that the court can
give you is deferred adjudication. Shock probation and
regular community supervision are not available.
If you are placed on community supervision, the Court will
determine the conditions of that supervision. The conditions
may include your incarceration for a significant period of
The Court's Admonishments and Appellant's
Guilty Pleas in Open Court
court verbally explained to appellant the potential
sentencing range he faced, and appellant entered guilty pleas
to both charges:
THE COURT: With those enhancements on each of those cases,
sir, the range of punishment you face on your possession with
intent to deliver along with your engaging is a minimum of 15
years up to life in prison. You understand that's ...