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Alexander M. ALBRITTON, Appellant, v. STATE of Florida, Appellee.

CASE NO. 1D15–2776

Decided: September 20, 2017

Alexander M. Albritton, pro se, Appellant. Pamela Jo Bondi, Attorney General, and Heather Flanagan Ross, Assistant Attorney General, Tallahassee, for Appellee.

In this post-Miller 1 appeal, Alexander M. Albritton challenges his mandatory life sentence for first-degree murder because he was allegedly sixteen years old at the time the crime was committed. The trial court summarily denied Albritton's motion for post-conviction relief, concluding that Miller is inapplicable because Albritton is parole eligible after twenty-five years.

In light of the Florida Supreme Court's intervening decision in Atwell v. State, 197 So. 3d 1040 (Fla. 2016), we hold that Albritton is entitled to resentencing pursuant to the provisions of chapter 2014–220, Laws of Florida, if the trial court determines that Albritton's allegation concerning his juvenile status at the time of the crime is correct. See Reid v. State, 42 Fla. L. Weekly D1216 (Fla. 3d DCA May 31, 2017) (“[W]e read Atwell to reject the notion that Florida's current parole scheme provides the individualized consideration of a defendant's juvenile status required under Miller.”);  Michel v. State, 204 So. 3d 101, 101 (Fla. 4th DCA 2016) (certifying conflict with Stallings v. State, 198 So. 3d 1081 (Fla. 5th DCA 2016), and Williams v. State, 198 So. 3d 1084 (Fla. 5th DCA 2016), “to the extent that those decisions suggest that relief under Atwell is dependent on the defendant's presumptive parole release date.”).2

We therefore remand for the trial court to conduct such proceedings as are necessary to determine whether Albritton was a juvenile at the time of the offense, and if so, to resentence him for his first-degree murder conviction pursuant to chapter 2014–220, Laws of Florida, which has been codified in sections 775.082, 921.1401, and 921.1402, Florida Statutes. See Atwell, 197 So. 3d at 1050.

REVERSED and REMANDED with instructions.


1.   Miller v. Alabama, 567 U.S. 460 (2012) (holding that a mandatory life without parole sentence for juvenile homicide offenders violates the Eighth Amendment's prohibition on cruel and unusual punishments).

2.   The conflict is under review by the Florida Supreme Court. State v. Michel, Case No. SC16–2187 (Fla. Jan. 18, 2017).



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