Posts tagged "Dayton"

Commonwealth v. Dayton (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-100-17)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA, 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030;   SJC-12213   COMMONWEALTH  vs.  TIMOTHY O. DAYTON.       Berkshire.     January 9, 2017. – June 1, 2017.   Present:  Gants, C.J., Lenk, Hines, Gaziano, Lowy, & Budd, JJ.     Motor Vehicle, Operating under the influence.  Constitutional Law, Preventive detention.  Statute, Construction.       Indictments found and returned in the Superior Court Department on October 5, 2015.   A motion for pretrial detention was heard by John A. Agostini, J., and a question of law was reported by him.   The Supreme Judicial Court on its own initiative transferred the case from the Appeals Court.     Ryan D. Smith, Committee for Public Counsel Services, for the defendant. Joseph G.A. Coliflores, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth.     HINES, J.  A Superior Court judge reported the question whether G. L. c. 276, § 58A, permits the Commonwealth to seek pretrial detention without bail when a defendant has two prior convictions of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol (OUI), G. L. c. 90, § 24, and is charged with OUI, third offense.  Because § 58A requires three OUI convictions before a defendant can be so detained, we answer the question in the negative. Background.  In October, 2015, the defendant, Timothy O. Dayton, was charged in the Superior Court with eight motor vehicle violations, including two indictments for OUI, third offense, in relation to two separate incidents pending in the District Court.  Each OUI indictment alleged that Dayton had been convicted of OUI twice before — in 1988 and in 1989. The Commonwealth moved for a dangerousness hearing pursuant to § 58A.  The defendant opposed the motion, arguing that § 58A permits a dangerousness hearing only after three prior OUI convictions, not two. A Superior Court judge initially agreed with the defendant, and denied the Commonwealth’s motion and its motion for reconsideration.  However, the Commonwealth sought review by a single justice of this court, pursuant to G. L. c. 211, § 3.  The single justice ordered the judge to hold the dangerousness hearing, at the same time acknowledging that the language of § 58A was “unclear” and noting that the judge was “not precluded from reporting the question to the [Appeals Court].” After hearing, the judge determined that the defendant was dangerous within the meaning of § 58A and ordered him held without bail pending trial.  On the defendant’s […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - June 2, 2017 at 12:29 am

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