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D'Ambruoso v. Wall

Superior Court of Rhode Island

May 15, 2014

PETER D'AMBRUOSO
v.
A.T. WALL, R.I. PAROLE BOARD, STATE OF RHODE ISLAND

Providence County Superior Court.

For Plaintiff: Peter D'Ambruoso, pro se Kenneth J. Shea, Esq.

For Defendant: Jeanine McConaghy, Esq.

DECISION

LANPHEAR, J.

This matter came on for trial before the Court on a request for post- conviction relief of Mr. D'Ambruoso's conviction in case number P2-2007-1642. When Mr. D'Ambruoso represented himself and with court-appointed counsel, his requests for relief have never been a model of clarity. He focuses on his limited rights to be heard at proceedings before the Parole Board. In an attempt to address all pending issues, the Court will discuss both the travel and the issues raised.

I. Findings of Fact

On March 4, 2007, Mr. D'Ambruoso pled nolo contendere to a charge of possession of a controlled substance. Magistrate Keough of this Court, now retired, accepted his plea and sentenced Mr. D'Ambruoso to six years at the Adult Correctional Institutions with nine months to serve and the remainder to be a suspended sentence, running with probation. Mr. D'Ambruoso received credit for time that he had served since March 22, 2007.

During the next two years, Mr. D'Ambruoso was presented three times for having violated the terms of his sentence. In March of 2009, Mr. D'Ambruoso admitted to violating the terms of his sentence, but he is not contesting the violation or the sentencing on the violation.

At some point, Mr. D'Ambruoso was paroled from his time to serve.[1] In the spring of 2012, Mr. D'Ambruoso was informed that his parole was being revoked. He first requested a hearing before the Parole Board in June of 2012, but the board released him into the community on June 22, 2012. In July 2012, Mr. D'Ambruoso was informed his parole was revoked again. This time he specifically executed a document waiving his right to a preliminary hearing. A full hearing on the merits was therefore scheduled before the board in August 2012. In August 2012, his parole was revoked and his case was continued for consideration to February 2013. The Parole Board also declared that as Mr. D'Ambruoso had violated the terms of his parole, he failed to meet the conditions of his release. Therefore, approximately two years was added to his sentence, in accord with his parole agreement.

In January 2013, Mr. D'Ambruoso was released on parole once again, with electronic monitoring. Eight months later, Mr. D'Ambruoso was alleged to have tested positive for cocaine at The Providence Center. He was again incarcerated until the Parole Board released him into a halfway program in October 2013. In November or December 2013, another detention warrant issued claiming that Mr. D'Ambruoso was not reporting to The Providence Center for treatment. Mr. D'Ambruoso was later released.[2] He was not incarcerated at the time of the court hearing in February 2014.

II Analysis

It is challenging, at best, to determine precisely what Mr. D'Ambruoso's claims for post-conviction relief are. He seems to focus his arguments on the failure of the Parole Board to provide him with a hearing and with the addition of time to his sentence by the Parole Board. The Court will attempt to address each of his arguments.

A Alleged Constitutional Violations

First, in his complaint of October 2012, Mr. D'Ambruoso states, generally, that his sentence in case number P2-2007-1642 on March 22, 2007 was in violation of the United States Constitution. On May 4, 2007, Mr. D'Ambruoso pled nolo contendere to a charge of possession of a controlled substance. He was sentenced to a six-year sentence, with nine months to serve. When he pled, the magistrate presumably reviewed his Constitutional rights, including his entitlement to a trial by jury. Mr. D'Ambruoso did not question the sentence until five years later and failed to address it at the hearing or in his memorandum. Mr. D'Ambruoso references no specific Constitutional violations and appears to have withdrawn this ...


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