State v. Mejia-Espinoza

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Attorney Fees
  • Date Filed: 12-24-2014
  • Case #: A151633
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Haselton, C.J. for the Court; Duncan, P.J.; and Wollheim, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

A court cannot impose fees based on pure speculation that a defendant has funds to pay the fees or may acquire them in the future. The State bears the burden of proving that the defendant is or may be able to pay attorney fees.

Defendant appealed the court-appointed attorney fees ordered after his conviction. Defendant was convicted of first-degree rape, first-degree unlawful sexual penetration, and first-degree sexual assault. Defendant was sentenced to 200 months and ordered to pay $6,000 in court-appointed attorney fees. Defendant appealed and raised nine assignments of error. The Court, however, only addressed the Defendant’s claim that the trial court erred in ordering him to pay $6,000 in court-appointed attorney fees. The Court found that the evidence in the record was insufficient to support a finding that defendant was or might be able to pay the court-appointed attorney fees. Attorney fees reversed, otherwise affirmed.

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