State v. Fuller

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Supreme Court
  • Area(s) of Law: Criminal Law
  • Date Filed: 10-03-2013
  • Case #: SC S60808
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Brewer, J. for the Court; En Banc

Violations do not preclude a defendant from asserting a right to a jury trial pursuant to Oregon Constitution Article 1, section 11.

The State appealed from a Court of Appeals decision reversing Defendant’s convictions for third-degree shoplifting and attempted first-degree shoplifting. Defendant was arrested in 2010, and at her arraignment, the State chose to prosecute the charges as violations instead of misdemeanors pursuant to ORS 161.556(1). Defendant filed motion for jury trial. The trial court denied the motion and found the Defendant guilty. On appeal, the Court of Appeals agreed with Defendant that the “violations” so closely resembled a criminal prosecution that denying a trial by jury and proof beyond reasonable doubt were improper. On appeal to the Supreme Court, the Court set forth the rule that when the prosecution of a violation takes on the appearance of a criminal prosecution, constitutional jury rights attach to that proceeding. In so doing, the Court reiterated the five-part test presented in Brown v. Multnomah County Dist. Ct., 280 Or 95, 100-102 (1977) for determining the line between violation and criminal proceeding. In applying this rule, the Court affirmed the Court of Appeals which overturned Defendant's conviction, and remanded the case for further proceedings.

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