Under New Hampshire criminal law, whenever a prison sentence is imposed both the defendant and the State have the option of requesting sentence review. RSA 651:58 dictates that the application must be made to the clerk of the Superior Court that imposed the sentence and must be made within 30 days of the day the sentence is imposed.
Once the application is made, the review hearing will be scheduled before a panel of 3 magistrates or Superior Court judges who will have the power to decrease the sentence; increase the sentence; or keep the sentence the same as imposed by the sentencing judge.
Negotiated pleas often include a requirement that both the defendant and the prosecutor waive their respective rights to request sentence review. Sentence review is different than a petition to reduce a prison sentence that can be filed when the defendant has served ⅔ of his minimum sentence pursuant to RSA 651:18.
Whenever a prison sentence is imposed, the defendant has a right to request a sentence review. Contact Cohen & Winters today for a free consultation of your case.