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Showing posts from April, 2017

The (Statutory) Right to Counsel Emerges in the DUI/OUI Investigation.

State v. Scalera (HSC April 21, 2017) Background. John Scalera was arrested under suspicion for operating a vehicle while under the influence of an intoxicant. He was taken to the police station and the arresting officer read to him the police-issued implied consent form. The form stated that Scalera did not have the right to “an attorney before you submit to any tests or tests to determine your alcohol and/or drug content.” The officer then asked if Scalera would submit to a test. He said he would not take anything. The officer considered that a refusal and moved on to the longer implied consent form. He again said he wasn’t going to take anything. The officer deemed it a refusal.
The officer did not hear Scalera ask for an attorney, but later testified at a hearing that even if he did, he did not recall Scalera asking for one. The officer said that it “wouldn’t have mattered anyways because the forms state that you’re not entitled to an attorney during the implied consent.”
Scalera was…

Delay in Determining if Defendant is Indigent or not Excluded from Rule 48

State v. Foo (ICA December 29, 2016) Background. Quincy Choy Foo was charged with misdemeanors. He appeared in court and had no counsel. The district court referred Foo to the Office of the Public Defender to determine if he qualified for its services and ordered him to return in twenty-one days. Choy Foo appeared again without a lawyer and told the court that he had an appointment set up with the Public Defender’s Office. The case was continued again. He appeared a third time and said that the Public Defender’s Office told him to ask for more time because its deputies were in training. The court continued it again. This time he had a Public Defender who entered a not-guilty plea and demanded a jury trial. The district court remanded the case to the circuit court and set another date. At the next date before the circuit court, Choy Foo again pleaded not guilty and set the matter for trial. The circuit court continued the matter twice over the State’s objection.
Choy Foo filed a motion t…

Sidebars are Part of the Trial Too (So the Defendant gets to Stand There)

State v. Hilario (ICA April 19, 2017) Background. Vincente Kotekapika Hilario was convicted and sentenced for murder in the first degree and bribery of a witness. The case begins with Aureo Moore’s shooting near Anahola Beach Park on Kauai. Moore was the complainant for a robbery in the Safeway Parking Lot in Kapaa earlier that year.
Hilario was suspected of being the driver in the Safeway robbery. Hilario and another man named Kyle Akau were arrested for the Safeway robbery. The police found a backpack near Akau containing a camping permit, timecards, a paycheck stub, hotel receipts with Hilario’s name on it, two pistols, and 125 Oxycodone pills. After the robbery, there was evidence from Pua Crawford who testified that Hilario had been trying to arrange a meeting with Moore and had encouraged folks to say he wasn’t part of the Safeway robbery. Crawford eventually arranged the meeting with Moore at Anahola. She saw Hilario there, who told her that if anyone asked she never saw him. Oth…

Bugging the Mayor (and Everyone Around the Mayor) is not Disorderly Conduct

State v. Teale (HSC February 27, 2017) Background. Laulani Teale was arrested at a May Day event under suspicion of harassment. HRS § 710-1101(1)(a) and (3). At her trial, the prosecution called officers to testify. The officers testified that Teale was part of a group of activists blowing conch shells and carrying signs and a banner. At the event, Teale attempted three to five times to approach the mayor to speak with him. She repeatedly said she wanted to talk to the mayor, but officers intervened and said that she needed to go through proper channels before talking to him and that at this event, it would be inappropriate. The officers described her as “aggressive,” “loud,” and disruptive. While the mayor was sitting down watching performances, Teale tried for a final time. Officers surrounded the mayor. Teale had a conch shell in her hand. The officers instructed her to walk away. Teale stood up and tried to walk around the officers. Teale was picked up by the officers and arrested.…