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State v. Martin

March 17, 1997


Appeal from Superior Court of King County. Docket No: 96-8-00860-7. Date filed: 03/20/96. Judge signing: Hon. Norma S. Huggins.

Petition for Review Granted October 7, 1997, Reported at: 1997 Wash. LEXIS

PER CURIAM -- Keith Martin appeals his order of Disposition, arguing that the delay in Disposition resulting from transfer of his case to another county violated his rights under RCW 13.40.130(8) and JuCR 7.12(a). Because Martin has shown no prejudice from the delay, we affirm.

On November 22, 1995, the State charged Martin by information filed in Chelan County Superior Court, Juvenile Division, with two counts of first degree possession of stolen property. On January 9, 1996, the State dismissed one of the counts, and Martin pleaded guilty to the other. The court then transferred the case to King County for Disposition but denied the State's request for a continuance based on the transfer. The record reflects that the King County Clerk received the file on January 19, 1996.

Over two months later, Martin moved to dismiss the case or, in the alternative, to impose no sentence. He claimed that the trial court lost jurisdiction to sentence him because the hearing was scheduled more than 21 days after his guilty plea. The court denied the motion at the Disposition hearing on March 20, 1996, finding good cause for a continuance and that Martin had shown no prejudice from the delay. The court then entered a standard range Disposition. Martin now appeals.

As he did below, Martin claims that the King County trial court violated his right to a speedy Disposition. We review the grant of a continuance for an abuse of discretion, which occurs only when the trial court's decision is manifestly unreasonable or based on untenable grounds. *fn1

RCW 13.40.130(8) provides:

The Disposition hearing shall be held within fourteen days after the adjudicatory hearing or plea of guilty unless good cause is shown for further delay, or within twenty-one days if the juvenile is not held in a detention facility, unless good cause is shown for further delay.

JuCR 7.12(a) likewise sets a time limit for a Disposition hearing of 21 days from the guilty plea if the respondent is not in detention. The court may extend that time limit "for good cause shown." *fn2

Here, the juvenile court found good cause for the delay, based on the logistics of transfer from Chelan County and the failure of Martin to show any prejudice. King County Superior Court received the file on January 19, 10 days after Martin's adjudication. Martin's attorney was appointed and filed his notice of appearance on March 12. The Disposition hearing then occurred on March 20, 1996. The trial court acknowledged that transfer of a case necessarily causes some delay and stated that it would be inappropriate for it to proceed to Disposition before Martin had an attorney assigned. But in the record before us, the State gives no explanation for the nearly two-month delay between King County's receipt of the file and the appointment of Martin's counsel. In the absence of any such explanation, we conclude that the State did not show good cause for the delay.

But we have stated that unless a juvenile respondent shows prejudice from a violation of JuCR 7.12(a) and RCW 13.40.130(8), the court will impose no remedy for the violation. *fn3 We noted that the Supreme Court, by rule, had provided the remedy of dismissal for other violations of the juvenile court rules:

Had the Supreme Court intended strict compliance or dismissal with respect to JuCR 7.12(a), and had the Legislature intended strict compliance or dismissal with respect to RCW 13.40.130(8), the Supreme Court and the Legislature presumably would have so provided.

Cf. JuCR 7.8(g) (providing that if an adjudicatory hearing is not held within 60 days of the arraignment, "the information shall be dismissed with prejudice."). *fn4

Martin argues that the mandatory language of the statute and rule makes it unnecessary for him to show prejudice from the delay. For support he cites State v. Krall, *fn5 in which our Supreme Court held that entry of an order of restitution more than 60 days after sentencing was reversible error. The court held that the Legislature had created a mandatory time limit by the language: "'When restitution is ordered, the court shall determine the amount of restitution due at the sentencing hearing or within 60 days.'" *fn6 But the court was considering adult sentencing, a statutory scheme different from the one in this case. Krall does not therefore require us to depart from our previous holdings regarding the juvenile Disposition statute.

Martin fails to cite any controlling authority that requires us to question the holdings of Carlson and Eugene W. that a juvenile respondent must show prejudice before the court will grant a remedy for delay of the Disposition hearing. We have found no reported cases directly addressing RCW 13.40.130 in light of Krall. But our Supreme Court recently distinguished an untimely restitution order case from one involving a delay in juvenile Disposition and cited Carlson and Eugene W. in rejecting the State's contention that a defendant must show prejudice from an untimely restitution order. *fn7 In light of this ...

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