CRAIG D. SALLIE a/k/a CRAIG D. SALLIE, SR. a/k/a CRAIG SALLIE
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI
OF JUDGMENT: 05/12/2015
COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT TRIAL HON. JOHN HUEY EMFINGER JUDGE
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: CYNTHIA ANN STEWART.
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY:
DISTRICT ATTORNEY: MICHAEL GUEST.
WRIT OF CERTIORARI
Craig Sallie was charged with one count of aggravated assault
for shooting Gregory Johnson in the back and one count of
possession of a weapon by a convicted felon. A Madison County
jury found Sallie guilty of both counts, and the circuit
court sentenced him to twenty years and ten years,
respectively, with sentences to run concurrently in the
custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC).
The circuit court also sentenced Sallie to an additional ten
years pursuant to the firearm-enhancement statute under
Mississippi Code Section 97-37-37 (Rev. 2014), with that
sentence to run consecutively to the other sentences, for a
total sentence of thirty years in the MDOC. The Court of
Appeals affirmed. Sallie v. State, 155 So.3d 872
(Miss. Ct. App. 2013) (Sallie I).
On writ of certiorari, a majority of this Court found
"Sallie was not given adequate pretrial notice that an
enhanced punishment would be sought until after his
conviction, " which violated his right to due process.
Sallie v. State, 155 So.3d 760 (Miss. 2015)
(Sallie II). The majority affirmed Sallie's
convictions for aggravated assault and felon in possession of
a firearm but vacated Sallie's sentence and remanded the
case to the circuit court for resentencing.
On remand, the circuit court restructured Sallie's
remaining sentences to run consecutively instead of
concurrently, resulting in a thirty-year sentence without the
enhanced penalty portion prescribed by Section 97-37-37.
Finding no error, the Court of Appeals affirmed. Sallie
v. State, So.3d _, 2016 WL 7636895, 2015-KA-00819-COA
(Miss. Ct. App. Dec. 6, 2016) (Sallie
¶4. Sallie petitions this Court for certiorari review,
raising one issue:
Whether the trial court's decision to change the
sentences to run [consecutively] on Count I and Count II was
error because the Court of Appeals affirmed those convictions
and sentences and the Mississippi Supreme Court remanded only
the sentence pursuant to [Section 97-37-37].
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
On November 28, 2011, Johnson walked past Sallie's house
en route to his own home. Sallie, who previously had accused
Johnson of stealing a bottle of whisky from him, yelled at
Johnson, demanding that Johnson come into his (Sallie's)
yard. Johnson refused and told Sallie to come into the street
so they could settle the dispute "like men."
Johnson called Sallie an expletive and then turned to walk
away. Sallie pulled out a gun and started shooting. Sallie
shot Johnson five times, with one bullet hitting Johnson in
the spine, paralyzing him from the waist down.
Sallie was charged with aggravated assault and possession of
a firearm by a convicted felon. The jury found Sallie guilty
of both counts. Afterward, the trial court scheduled a
sentencing hearing and stated, "I also wish to consider
the firearm enhancement as provided by 97-37-37(2)."
See Miss. Code Ann. § 97-37-37(2) ("any
convicted felon who uses or displays a firearm during the
commission of any felony shall . . . be sentenced to an
additional term of imprisonment . . . of ten (10)
At the sentencing hearing, Sallie objected to application of
Section 97-37-37 based on lack of notice from the State and
based on the trial court raising the enhancement sua sponte.
The trial court sentenced Sallie to twenty years for
aggravated assault, ten years for felon in possession of a
firearm; the court then enhanced the sentence by ten years
under Section 97-37-37(2).
Sallie appealed, claiming the trial court erred by limiting
Sallie's cross-examination of Johnson at trial, and that
the firearm enhancement to his sentence post-trial was
illegal given that Sallie did not receive pretrial notice
that he might be sentenced under that statute. The Court of
Appeals found no merit in either assignment of error raised
Addressing the latter issue, the Court of Appeals found the
enhanced portion of Sallie's sentence did not run afoul
of Apprendi v. New Jersey, 530 U.S. 466, 120 S.Ct.
2348, 147 L.Ed.2d 435 (2000), and therefore was legal.
Sallie (I), 155 So.3d at 875. In analyzing
Apprendi, the court found that all the elements of
the firearm enhancement had been submitted properly to the
jury and had been found by the jury beyond a reasonable
doubt. Id. The court concluded that the indictment
did not need to reference the enhancement statute; therefore,
there was no unfair surprise regarding the firearm
This Court granted certiorari, stating:
We agree that the trial court did not abuse its discretion by
limiting Sallie's cross-examination of Johnson.
Therefore, we limit our review to the question of whether
Sallie received fair notice of the firearm enhancement.
See Guice v. State, 952 So.2d 129, 133 (Miss. 2007)
(Supreme Court ...