Posts tagged "1005114"

Commonwealth v. Muniur M., a juvenile (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-051-14)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.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‑11552   COMMONWEALTH  vs.  MUNIUR M., a juvenile.     March 18, 2014.     Delinquent Child.  District Court, Delinquent child.  Practice, Criminal, Juvenile delinquency proceeding, Admission to sufficient facts to warrant finding, Plea, New trial.  Evidence, Juvenile delinquency, Guilty plea.       A District Court judge allowed the juvenile’s motion to vacate his admission to sufficient facts and for a new trial on the ground that the admission was coerced.  The Commonwealth appealed, and the Appeals Court reversed.  Commonwealth v. Muniur M., 83 Mass. App. Ct. 1132 (2013).  We granted the juvenile’s application for further appellate review.  Commonwealth v. Muniur M., 466 Mass. 1106 (2013).  We now vacate the judge’s order and remand for further proceedings.   Background.  In 1992, the juvenile, who was fourteen years old, was charged in the juvenile session of the District Court with delinquency by reason of rape of a child with force under G. L. c. 265, § 22A.  It was alleged that he digitally raped a female, who was thirteen years old, with whom he attended middle school.  The juvenile later admitted to sufficient facts to warrant an adjudication of delinquency on the charge of statutory rape.  When he made this admission, his father was pursuing several State and Federal lawsuits against the city of Pittsfield alleging racial discrimination resulting in his termination as a police officer from the Pittsfield police department.  A District Court judge ordered that the juvenile submit to a presentence evaluation pursuant to G. L. c. 123, § 15 (e).     The evaluator met with the juvenile’s parents separately, with the juvenile alone, and with all three together.  The evaluator observed that the juvenile was “very withdrawn, staring out the window and answering questions in barely audible, short responses” when he was in his father’s presence, but “far more animate[d] and responsive” when he was alone.  She opined that there was “some underlying depression,” which was probably caused by the strain on his father and family as a result of the pending lawsuits.  The father appeared to be so preoccupied with his own legal situation that it was difficult to keep him focused on his son.  The mother complained that the father was similarly preoccupied at home.  The evaluator recognized that both parents were “appropriately concerned” about the juvenile.  They acknowledged that he had engaged in some wrongdoing and indicated that they […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - March 18, 2014 at 2:18 pm

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