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State v. Dawson

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 08-29-2012
Case #: A145795
Brewer, J. for the Court; Ortega, P.J.; and Sercombe, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/Publications/A145795.pdf

Criminal Procedure: Under ORS 137.020, following a guilty plea or verdict, there shall be at least two calendar days between the time of verdict and sentencing.

Defendant appealed the trial court's sentencing after he was found guilty of driving under the influence (DUII), believing the court failed to comply with 137.020(2)(a) by not allowing Defendant a separation of two calendar days between the jury's verdict and the judge's decision on sentencing. When the jury found Defendant guilty of reckless driving and a DUII, his defense counsel asked the judge for 48 hours before the judge determined Defendant's sentencing, without specifically referencing 137.020(2)(a), but by arguing that he believed it was Defendant's right. The trial court alluded to Defendant's council that there was no rule allowing for two days, after which the court offered only to wait 30 seconds before determining Defendant's sentencing. The Court of Appeals determined that other jurisdictions have supported similar sentencing guidelines to Oregon's 137.020(2)(a) to create distance between the time of judgment and the sentencing for that judgement with the goal of reducing prejudice. Although, the State argued Defendant had not shown he was prejudiced, the Court of Appeals found that the judge was "emotionally impacted" by the case, and that Defendant was entitled to 48 hours between the jury's decision and sentencing. Remanded for resentencing; otherwise affirmed.