Rules of Criminal Procedure – Comment Period Closed May 1, 2016

Rule 38 The proposed amendment creates a process for reinstating the time for appeal in justice courts, consistent with the principles in Manning v. State, 2004 UT App 87.  The amendment creates deadlines for motions and subsequent notices of appeal.

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4 thoughts on “Rules of Criminal Procedure – Comment Period Closed May 1, 2016
  1. Judge Derek P. Pullan

    Jury deliberations are complex and nuanced. A juror who has not been present from the beginning of deliberations, can never be placed in the same position as a juror who has been. To say that deliberations can “begin anew” is a fiction. If this is a policy choice to accept that fiction as reality, then so be it. But I believe the policy itself is flawed. Jury deliberations should involve all jurors, start to finish. Anything less is not a deliberation of the entire jury. This proposed rule change goes to the heart of the right to jury trial and should be rejected..

  2. Paul

    “If the justice court finds by a preponderance of the evidence that the defendant has demonstrated that the defendant was deprived of the right to appeal,it shall enter an order reinstating the time for appeal.”

    This language/standard is very broad. Isn’t a defendant deprived of his right to appeal simply because he did not file the notice of appeal on time? Isn’t a defendant deprived of his right to appeal when the district court dismisses is for not appearing in the district court? Seems to me there ought to be specific grounds that constitute cause. For example, 78B-9-104, Utah Code, provides grounds for relief. Something like that should be incorporated. Otherwise, why even set a deadline with which to file, the door is thrown wide open.

  3. Brian Haws

    Please Look at current subsection (e)(6) or proposed (f)(6) other dispositions. The current language allows a defendant to appeal plea of guilty in the justice court and then appeal and demand a jury trial, then after the jury enters a verdict against them, they can withdraw the appeal before the court can impose judgment. A verdict is not a judgment and because a defendant has a constitutional right to wait at least two days before they can be sentenced, they can then withdraw and go back to justice court for another jury trial and then potentially they can appeal that and get a third jury trial in a case.

    The first two steps of this scenario occurred on an appeal out of the Saratoga Springs Justice court when Judge Low articulated that he had no choice but to grant a motion to withdraw the appeal after a jury had found the defendant guilty on all counts.

    This scenario can be avoided by amending the language to include the term verdict with a
    judgment. “A defendant, at a point prior to a verdict or judgment, by plea or trial, may choose to withdraw the appeal . . . . ”

    Please consider this change as well as the propose changes.

  4. Staci Visser

    Writing as the attorney that argued this issue before the Utah Supreme Court in 2014,, I’m glad to see that Manning v. State will be incorporated into the justice court appeal process. A few concerns though:

    1. Is Utah Rule of App. P. 4(f) also being changed to add the timelines?

    2. Why is there a six month deadline for a justice court Manning challenge but when requesting to reinstate a remanded appeal from the district court 38(l)(2) it must be “within a reasonable time”? It seems to me that those should be consistent with each other as they are effectively dealing with the same constitutional right–the right to a trial de novo in the district court.

    4. The language “excusable neglect” is screaming for further interpretation. How does this standard interact with the three exceptions for reinstatement of an appeal in Manning?

    So many questions…