Meeker County defendant cannot withdraw Alford plea
Anthony Steven Kalland sought to withdraw a plea that resulted in one-year jail sentence. The Minnesota Court of Appeals found no error by the Meeker County District Court in accepting plea by defendant. He was arrested at a rural residence three days after he allegedly eluded arrest there.
ST. PAUL — Anthony Steven Kalland, 40, formerly of Brainerd, cannot withdraw his Alford plea for a fifth-degree substance possession conviction in Meeker County that netted him a one-year jail sentence.
In a ruling issued Monday, the Minnesota Court of Appeals found that the Meeker County District Court did not error in accepting Kalland’s plea.
Kalland entered his plea and was sentenced April 15, 2019. In an Alford plea, a defendant acknowledges that the record establishes his guilt and accepts as a fact that he reasonably believes the state has sufficient evidence to secure a conviction, while not expressly admitting guilt, according to the Court of Appeals.
Kallard argued in an appeal that he should be able to withdraw his plea because the court did not expressly find him guilty and that evidence placed in the record at the plea did not demonstrate a “strong probability” that he would be found guilty.
The Court of Appeals stated in its ruling that the district court is not required to make a formal statement of the defendant’s guilt when accepting an Alford plea, and that the record as a whole supports a factual basis for a guilty plea.
Kalland was arrested Dec. 30, 2018, at a residence in Harvey Township, Meeker County. Meeker County sheriff’s officers had responded to the residence three days earlier on a report of a domestic disturbance, but did not find Kalland after establishing a perimeter of the house.
Officers returned to the residence on Dec. 30 after receiving a tip that Kalland had returned to it. They found him hiding under a pile of blankets, according to the court documents.
Officers located a firearm, ammunition, a small amount of methamphetamine, and a scale containing methamphetamine.