The Volokh Conspiracy
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The Parole Board initially denied Smiley Allen Martin parole but then released him in February—he has now been arrested (as have his brother Dandrae Martin and Daviyonne Dawson) in connection with the shootings that killed six and wounded twelve. Note that the letter's statement that the offense for which he was serving time was not "violent" simply reflects the definition of "violent felony" in a particular California sentencing enhancement statute, which generally doesn't include assault; in ordinary language, of course, the crime was highly violent. Here's the letter; the Sacramento Bee's Sam Stanton broke the story.
April 29, 2021
Non-Violent Parole Review Process
Board of Parole Hearings …
RE: Smiley Allen Martin CDC # AT8808 DOCKET # 17FE008296
Inmate Martin has, for his entire adult life, displayed a pattern of criminal behavior. While the current case on review may not be "violent" under the Penal Code, Inmate Martin's criminal conduct is violent and lengthy. Inmate Martin has committed several felony violations and clearly has little regard for human life and the law, which can be shown by his conduct in his prior felony convictions of robbery, possession of a firearm and prior misdemeanor conviction of providing false information to a peace officer.
In January of 2013, just six months after his eighteenth birthday, Inmate Martin was contacted by law enforcement officers. Inmate Martin attempted to discard an assault rifle which he had concealed in his waistband under his clothing. The rifle had a pistol grip and the capacity to accept a detachable magazine in front of the pistol grip. Inmate Martin was also found to be in possession of two fully loaded twenty-five round magazines for the assault weapon. Inmate Martin admitted to transporting the assault weapon and large capacity magazines to potential buyers. Inmate Martin was sentenced to probation and county jail.
On November 25, 2013, just ten months after being placed on felony probation, Inmate Martin and three other suspects entered Walmart and asked a clerk in the electronics department to view a Samsung Galaxy Notebook which was secured in a theft-resistant glass case. As the clerk opened the case Inmate Martin physically pushed the clerk to one side and grabbed several Galaxy Notebooks, valued at approximately $2800, and fled from the store. Video surveillance captured the incident. During the investigation, law enforcement discovered additional robberies committed on November 29, 2013 and November 30, 2013, of similar electronics at other Walmart and Target stores. Witnesses positively identified Inmate Martin through surveillance photos at those subsequent robberies. Inmate Martin pled to the robbery and was sentenced to two years in state prison.
On November 29, 2016 Inmate Martin was contacted by law enforcement in a vehicle with three other passengers. When asked for his name he identified himself as Desean Dorsey and could not provide a birthdate. Officers informed Inmate Martin they were going to detain him until they could identify him. Inmate Martin pulled from their grasp and took off running. After a foot pursuit Inmate Martin was eventually incapacitated with a Taser and ultimately taken into custody. Officers were able to identify him and learned he was a parolee at large. One of the passengers of the vehicle Inmate Martin had been with was found to have an unregistered, loaded, handgun in her purse. Inmate Martin was charged with and ultimately pled to giving false information to a peace officer.
Less than six months later, Inmate Martin forcibly entered his girlfriend's residence. He located her hiding in her bedroom closet and hit her repeatedly with a closed fist on the face, head, and body, causing visible injuries. He then dragged her out of the home by her hair to an awaiting car. After he put her in the car, he assaulted her with a belt. During the investigation information was gathered that the victim had been working as a prostitute and that Inmate Martin had been assisting and encouraging her to be a prostitute. Text messages and social media conversations revealed that he would tell her what kind of sex buyer she should date, how much money to charge, how to accept payment, and what forms of payment she should accept. Inmate Martin pled to two felony assault charges for a sentence of ten years state prison.
As shown by Inmate Martin's pattern of conduct, he is an assaultive and non-compliant individual and has absolutely no regard for his victims who are left in the wake of numerous serious offenses. He has no respect for others, for law enforcement or for the law. If he is released early, he will continue to break the law.
As we are given 30 days to respond, and we are not provided with any disciplinary history or any other information aside from the one-page notice of parole review, I cannot comment on Inmate Martin's prison conduct. However, from the records that are available it is clear that Inmate Martin should not be released as he poses a significant, unreasonable risk of safety to the community. Inmate Martin has demonstrated repeatedly that he cannot follow the laws, or conditions the court places on him. His history indicates that he will pursue his own personal agenda regardless of the consequences and regulatory restraints placed upon him. On behalf of the District Attorney's Office, I ask that you deny his request for early release.
Deputy District Attorney
Sacramento County District Attorney's Office