Lewis Blake appears on his own behalf and has filed an
unverified "Motion for Supervisory Control,"
seeking amendment of his criminal judgment to allow him
contact with his common law wife. On May 21, 2018, Blake
pleaded guilty to misdemeanor partner or family member
assault (PFMA). His common law wife was the victim. Blake
explains that both he and his wife have tried "to get
all the restrictions removed," but to no avail. Blake
provides that he has a terminal illness; he was not aware of
a "no contact" Order until recently; and that he
and his wife "still are visiting each other here at the
Montana State Prison." He explains that the Thirteenth
Judicial District Court stated at his May 21, 2018 change of
plea hearing, "upon motion from the Defense, and hearing
no objections from the State, the Court modifies the Release
Order to allow no unreasonable contact with the
victim[.]" Blake argues that the Court's statements
should appear in a written order, but that no written Order
with that specific condition exists.
observe that while Blake served the Clerk of District Court
with a copy of his motion, he did not serve the presiding
Judge. M. R. App. P. 14(6).
Blake stated in his petition and, which we have confirmed
through available electronic records, the Yellowstone County
District Court accepted his guilty pleas to misdemeanor PFMA
and felony criminal possession of dangerous drugs on May 21,
2018, and in July, sentenced Blake to a suspended one-year
term in the Yellowstone County Detention Facility and a
concurrent five-year term to the Department of Corrections
(DOC) with three years suspended. Blake has not yet
discharged to the suspended portion of his sentence. A
condition of the Judgment provides:
22. The Defendant shall not knowingly have any contact, oral,
written, electronic or through a third party, with the
victim(s) unless such contact is voluntarily initiated by the
victim(s) through the Department of Corrections. DOC staff
may notify victims about the availability of opportunities
for facilitated contact with their offenders without being
considered "third parties."
at 4 (Mont. Thirteenth Judicial Dist. Ct. Jul. 6, 2018).
21, 2018 Release Order, entered during the pendency of the
trial proceeding and pertaining only to bail and conditions
of release, provides that Blake is released and "[s]hall
avoid any and all contact with the alleged victim(s) of the
crime(s) and their families." Next to this condition,
are handwritten notes, presumably from the presiding judge,
that "no unreas contact may not discuss the case."
Copies of the May 21, 2018 minute entry provide: "Upon
motion from the defense, and hearing no objection from the
State, the [c]ourt modifies the Release Order to allow no
unreasonable contact with the victim." This Court has
also secured a copy of the court's docket sheet and
observe that Blake has filed several motions with the
District Court asking that he be allowed ‡o have
contact with the victim.
final judgment defines the contact he may have with the
victim, not the Release Order governing his bail conditions.
As the Judgment provides, any contact is to be through the
DOC - which will continue to be a condition once Blake is
under DOC supervision on probation. Indeed, Blake has been
able to visit with his wife while incarcerated. Following his
custodial discharge, Blake will begin his three-year
suspended sentence and remain under DOC's supervision.
Pursuant to his sentencing condition #22, his wife may
initiate facilitated contact with Blake through the DOC.
Court may exercise its supervisory power over all other
courts on a case-by-case basis. M. R. App. P. 14(3).
Supervisory control is an extraordinary remedy.
This extraordinary remedy can be invoked when the case
involves purely legal questions and urgent or emergency
factors make the normal appeal process inadequate. M. R. App.
P. 14(3);.... The case must meet one . .. additional
criteria: (a) the other court is proceeding under a mistake
of law and is causing a gross injustice; [or] (b)
constitutional issues of state-wide importance are
involved[.] M. R. App. P. 14(3)(a)-(b).
State v. Spady, 2015 MT 218, ¶ 11, 3 80 Mont.
179, 354 P.3d 590 (internal citation omitted). Supervisory
control does not apply here. Blake remains incarcerated and
continues to have contact with his wife. Blake has a final
judgment that controls here. Blake did not appeal, and he is
now time-barred to file an appeal or a petition for
postconviction relief in the District Court. M. R. App. P.
4(5)(b)(i); § 46-21-102(1)(a), MCA. Accordingly, IT IS
ORDERED that Blake's Motion for Supervisory Control is
Clerk of the Supreme Court is directed to provide a copy of
this Order to the Honorable Mary Jane Knisely, Thirteenth
Judicial District Court, Yellowstone County, along with a
copy of his motion; to Terry Halpin, Clerk of District Court,
Yellowstone County; to counsel of record; to Colleen Ambrose,
DOC Legal Counsel; ...