Sullivan v. StateAnnotate this Case
In 1997, Phillip Sullivan pled guilty to theft of property and was sentenced pursuant to the Community Punishment Act. In 2011, Sullivan filed a petition to seal the record in his theft-of-property case, claiming he was entitled to have his record expunged pursuant to the Act. The circuit court denied the petition, determining that it was without jurisdiction to grant the relief. In its order, the circuit court quoted from the version of the Act in effect in 1997 instead of the 2011 version. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) because Sullivan failed to object below to the application of the 2011 version of the Act and failed to raise any arguments on appeal in relation to the 1997 version, the Court could not engage in an interpretation of the 1997 version of the statute; and (2) the Court could not address the arguments that were raised by Sullivan on appeal in relation to the 2011 version of the Act because to do so would be to issue an advisory opinion on a version of the statute that had no application to the instant case.