Migliore v Livingston Financial, LLC

Migliore filed a Rule 60 motion seeking to have judgment entered against him declared void. The district court denied the motion, sua sponte scheduled a Rule 11 sanctions hearing and awarded Livingston attorney fees. The Utah Court of Appeals held it lacked jurisdiction as the rule 60 appeal was too late. The Court affirmed on different reasoning. It held that when a Rule 11 motion is pending, whether on motion of a party or sua sponte by the court, the time to appeal does not start until the sanctions issue is decided. The Court reasoned this would serve judicial economy by preventing piecemeal appeals. The Court held the Rule 60 motion was properly denied as Migliore had actual notice of the suit and an opportunity to give evidence. As the district court found the Rule 60 motion was done to hinder collection of the judgment, attorney fees were properly awarded.

Gonzalez v State

Gonzalez appealed his murder and gang convictions arguing his directed verdict motion should have been granted, the gang evidence should not have been admitted and the gang enhancement was unconstitutional. The Court, with two justices concurring in part and judgment, affirmed. The majority held that the directed verdict issue was preserved in context as self-defense was the only defense offered. The majority held the evidence presented- that Gonzales and the victim were part of rival gangs, had words, Gonzalez confronted victim in a public bathroom blocking the exit and came with a knife- were sufficient to send the case to the jury. All the justices agreed that the gang evidence was admissible to prove the charges and was not unduly prejudicial. All the justices agreed the enhancement argument was forfeited as it was raised after the deadline for motions. The concurrence argued that Gonzalez did not preserve the directed verdict argument as the motion only went to elements not self-defense.

Gildea v Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.

Gildea sued Wells Fargo to enforce a judgment lien. The district court dismissed as the 8 year period that a judgment is valid expired during the lawsuit. The Court affirmed. It held there was no good reason to overturn precedent holding the filing of a suit does not stop the expiration of a judgment especially as the legislature has created a way to renew judgments. The Court also held the filing of an answer with counterclaims is not bad faith and thus no equitable tolling occurred. It finally affirmed judgment as to the party Gildea bought the judgment from as the judgment is expired and thus has no value precluding damages.

State v Earl

Earl moved for her private attorney to be appointed her attorney in two cases. Both motions were denied based on the amendments to the Indigent Defense Act requiring the use of public defenders. The accepted her interlocutory appeals and affirmed. It held there was no retroactive application as Earl applied for an appointed counsel after the amendments took effect and the Act is procedural. The Court rejected Earl’s 6th Amendment claim as defendants can either hire their attorney of choice or have a publicly funded defense and states can require the use public defenders. It held the requirement does not violate equal protection as it is rational to reap economic efficiencies through the public defender model. The Court finally held public procurement law did not apply to public defender organizations and Earl lacked standing to invoke procurement law.

State v Perez

Before the Indigent Defense Act amendments took effect, Perez moved to have an investigator an expert witnesses appointed at public expense. Salt Lake County intervened and argued under the amendments applied and the public defender should be appointed. The district court granted Perez’s motion and the Court affirmed holding that since the criminal information, indigency finding and the motion were all done before the amendments took effect, the unamended statute applied.

State v Folsom

Folsom moved for an investigator and other expenses before the amendments to the indigent Defense Act came into effect. The district court ruled the amendments applied retroactively and denied the motion. The court reversed holding that since the criminal information, indigency finding and the motion were all done before the amendments took effect, the unamended statute applied

State v Steinly

Steinly moved for a private investigator and expert witness after the effective date of the amendments to the indigent Defense Act. The district court ruled the Act as it existed when the charges were field applied and the amendments were substantive and eliminated rights enjoyed by Steinly. The Court reversed holding the date the motion was filed is the day to determine which version applies and thus the amendments applied. The Court rejected Steiley’s constitutional challenges as defendants can either hire the attorney of their own choice or receive public financing when the state follows the public defender only model and it is rational to adopt that model to conserve indigent defense funds. The Court declined to deal with Steinly’s statutory claim leaving analysis of whether Salt Lake County complied with the single package rule on interlocutory appeal as the district court did not analyze the issue in the first instance.

State v Rodriguez-Ramirez

Rodriguez-Ramirez moved for appointment of an investigator and expert witness after the effective date of the Amendments to the Indigent Defense Act. The district court ruled the amendments were procedural, retroactive as to crimes committed before they came into effect and thus denied the motion. The Court affirmed on different grounds holding the amendments apply to motions filed after the effective date of the amendments came into effect. It rejected Rodriguez-Ramirez’s argument that custodial interrogation should be the date used for analysis as no right to government funded counsel exists on that date.