State v. Gray

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Criminal Procedure
  • Date Filed: 02-20-2014
  • Case #: A149013
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Haselton, C.J. for the Court; Duncan, P.J.; and Schuman, S.J.
  • Full Text Opinion

A court's failure to properly instruct a jury on the requisite culpable mental state required to commit the charged crime will result in plain error, which does not require preservation for appellate review.

Defendant appealed convictions for first-degree rape and sexual abuse. Two conflicting stories were given about the events. Defendant lived with and was married to the victim. Whether Defendant engaged in consensual sex and/or abused the victim was disputed at trial. The victim contacted the police and evidence was collected. Defendant was arrested by police and charged. At the close of trial, the court issued a jury instruction regarding first-degree rape and sexual abuse. Defendant took no exception to the given instructions. Defendant was convicted of first degree rape, and first and second degree sexual abuse. Defendant appealed conviction claiming the court improperly instructed the jury. The State argued that Defendant failed to preserve instructional error for review. Defendant argued that the court failed to include an instruction on requisite culpable mental state with regard to forcible compulsion. The Court of Appeals held that the trial court omitted part of the law, and committed plain error. Furthermore, Defendant's convictions were for serious convictions, which allowed the court to exercise discretion to correct error. Reversed and remanded on Counts 1 and 2; remanded for resentencing; otherwise affirmed.

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