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State v. Danby

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 05-15-2013
Case #: A149884
Ortega, P.J. for the court; Sercombe, J.; and Hadlock, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/docs/A149884.pdf

Criminal Law: DUII convictions under "former" ORS 487.540 can serve as predicate convictions for satisfying ORS 809.235.

Defendant appeals a decision by the trial court to suspend his driving privileges for life after he was convicted of DUII. Defendant was convicted of DUII after a clerk at a convenient store called the police upon witnessing the defendant drive up and walk into the store visibly intoxicated. At sentencing, the trial court concluded that the defendant’s prior convictions of DUII from 1998 and 1976 satisfied the requirements of ORS 809.235 which allows the court to permanently suspend a driver’s license when the person is convicted of DUII for a third time. On appeal, Defendant contended that his 1976 conviction did not satisfy the elements of ORS 809.235 because, at the time of his conviction, DUII was considered an infraction and not a crime.  In reaching its conclusion, the Court of Appeals noted a discussion of the legislature’s intent for passing ORS 809.235 in State v. Keller, 349 Or 626 (2011), which detailed the broadness of the statute’s agenda. Accordingly, because the legislature has continued to expand the range of convictions that could serve as predicate convictions for permanently losing a license under ORS 809.235, and because the legislature intended ORS 809.235 to be a continuance of its predecessors the Court determined that the defendant’s 1976 DUII conviction satisfied the elements of ORS 809.235. Affirmed.