Sunday, November 17, 2013

State v. Truesdell case brief

State v. Truesdell case brief summary
620 P.2d 427 (1980)


CASE SYNOPSIS
The State of Oklahoma appealed the order of the District Court, Nowata County, Oklahoma, which dismissed the charges against defendant that she had been an accessory to the crime of shooting with the intent to kill after her ex-husband was shot 10 times by their 12-year-old son.

CASE FACTS
The district judge ruled that a juvenile could not have committed a felony and that therefore there had been no crime to which defendant could have been an accessory.

DISCUSSION

  • On appeal, the court found that the dismissal had been an order sustaining a motion to quash and was not in response to a demurrer because the ruling had not been based on the face of the information, but rather on the evidence presented at the preliminary hearing. 
  • The court upheld the State's contention that the district judge erred because the fact that the principal to the crime had not been charged was not a condition precedent as to whether defendant was guilty as an accessory. 
  • The court ruled that the offender had to have known that the principal committed the crime and had to have concealed or aided the principal. 
  • The fact that the principal was a minor reflected his legal status, not his factual status, and it had been immaterial as to the guilt or innocence of defendant on the charge of accessory after the fact. 
  • Her conviction depended on whether there was sufficient evidence presented to have shown that there was a principal guilty of the crime, regardless of whether or not the principal was charged.

CONCLUSION
The court upheld the State's contention of error that dismissal of the charges against defendant that she had been an accessory to the crime of shooting with the intent to kill had been improper.

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