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Supreme Court releases for April 19, 2019

22 Apr 2019 4:44 PM | Tiffany Fisher (Administrator)

The Kansas Supreme Court released the following published decisions on April 19:

Appeal No. 112,834: State of Kansas v. Kenneth Boysaw

Archived oral argument video

A jury convicted Boysaw of one count of aggravated indecent liberties with a child. The Court of Appeals affirmed the conviction, and the Supreme Court granted review. Boysaw challenged the admission of evidence of prior sexual misconduct under K.S.A. 60-455 for the purpose of showing a propensity to commit the charged offense. Justice Eric Rosen, writing for a unanimous Supreme Court, held K.S.A. 60-455(d) satisfies federal constitutional due process requirements. The court declined to decide whether the statute violates the Kansas Constitution Bill of Rights, noting the argument was insufficiently preserved and articulated for a determinative ruling. The court also considered whether the probative value of the evidence outweighed its prejudicial effect The court held Sedgwick County District Court had engaged in an exemplary examination of the factors relating to proof or prejudice and did not abuse its discretion in admitting the evidence. Finally, the court determined the evidence sufficed to support the conviction and there were no infirmities in the sentencing process. The decisions of the district court and the Court of Appeals were affirmed.

Appeal No. 114,325: State of Kansas v. Murad Razzaq

Archived oral argument video

A jury convicted Razzaq of one count of aggravated indecent liberties with a child. The Court of Appeals affirmed the conviction, and the Supreme Court granted review. The appeal presented several issues in common with State v. Boysaw. Writing for a unanimous Supreme Court, Justice Eric Rosen held the introduction of K.S.A. 60-455(d) evidence of prior sexual misconduct was not unconstitutional under either the federal or Kansas constitutions. The court also found no violations of speedy trial requirements or constitutional sentencing mandates. The decisions of Sedgwick County District Court and the Court of Appeals were affirmed.

Appeal No. 115,648: State of Kansas v. James A Qualls III

Archived oral argument video

Qualls shot and killed a man in the course of an angry confrontation in a bar. A jury found him guilty of premeditated first-degree murder. In a previous appeal, the conviction was reversed because Shawnee County District Court failed to give proper lesser included offense instructions. On retrial, a jury again found him guilty, and he again appealed. He raised several issues on appeal, but the court elected to address only one of those issues, finding it dispositive. Writing for a unanimous Supreme Court, Justice Eric Rosen held the district court committed reversible error when it refused to give the self-defense instruction Qualls requested. The court noted substantial evidence supported an instruction that Qualls could be found not guilty if he was defending himself against a reasonably perceived threat of imminent harm. The conviction was reversed, and the case was remanded to district court.

Appeal No. 115,763: Timmy Glaze v. J.K. Williams LLC

Archived oral argument video

In a per curiam decision, the Supreme Court affirmed the dismissal of Glaze's workers compensation claim because Glaze did not file a motion for an extension within three years of filling an application for hearing. A majority of the court concluded K.S.A. 2011 Supp. 44-523(f) required this result. Justice Eric Rosen, in an opinion joined by Justices Lee Johnson and Dan Biles, dissented. Rosen concluded the statute permitted an administrative law judge to grant an extension whenever the claimant showed good cause, regardless of whether the claimant filed a motion for extension within the three-year time period. 

Appeal No. 116,167: Helen Loree Knoll v. Olathe School District No 233

Archived oral argument video

In a In a per curiam decision, the Supreme Court concluded K.S.A. 2011 Supp. 44-523(f)(1) required the dismissal of Knoll's workers compensation claim because Knoll did not file her motion for extension within three years from filing her application for hearing. Knoll argued the 2009 version of K.S.A. 44-523, which gave a claimant five years to file a motion for extension, governed her claim. The Supreme Court rejected this argument because the 2011 version of the statute had taken effect by the time Knoll filed her application for hearing. Justice Eric Rosen dissented because he did not interpret K.S.A. 2011 Supp. 44-523(f)(1) to require dismissal when a claimant failed to file a motion for extension within three years of filing an application for hearing. Justices Lee Johnson and Dan Biles joined in this dissent.  

Appeal No. 117,315: State of Kansas v. Jimmy Lee Murdock

Archived oral argument video 

For the second time, the Supreme Court reversed the Shawnee County District Court's calculation of Murdock's criminal history score and remanded for resentencing.

In Murdock's first appeal, he argued the district court miscalculated his criminal history score when it classified his prior out-of-state crimes as person felonies, resulting in a criminal history score of A. The Supreme Court reversed and remanded, holding Murdock's prior out-of-state convictions had to be scored as nonperson crimes. At resentencing, the district court followed this mandate and found Murdock had a criminal history score of C. But shortly after Murdock was resentenced, the Supreme Court decided State v. Keel, 302 Kan. 560, 357 P.3d 251 (2015), which overruled Murdock's case. The State promptly moved to correct Murdock's second sentence, claiming it was illegal based on Keel The district court granted the State's motion and sentenced Murdock a third time, finding he had a criminal history score of A. Murdock appealed again, arguing his second sentence was legally imposed and it did not become illegal after Keel changed the law. 

In an opinion written by Justice Caleb Stegall, the Supreme Court held the legality of a sentence under K.S.A. 22-3504 is controlled by the law in effect at the time the sentence was pronounced. Therefore, a sentence that was legal when pronounced does not become illegal if the law subsequently changes. The court concluded Murdock's second sentence was legal when pronounced, Keel subsequently changed the law, and that change did not make Murdock's sentence illegal. Accordingly, the court reversed and remanded with directions to reinstate Murdock's lawful sentence.

Appeal No. 117,344: Jaylene Lambert, et al. v. John E. Peterson M.D., et al.

Archived oral argument video 

The Supreme Court affirmed Wyandotte County District Court's dismissal of Lambert's petition alleging medical malpractice and negligence claims resulting in the death of her husband, Stan Novak. The district court clerk file-stamped the petition indicating it was received one day after the statute of limitations periods expired. Lambert's counsel argued the petition was timely because she filed the petition one day earlier, but it was rejected by the clerk. Lambert submitted some materials to support her argument. None of the materials established Lambert's counsel filed her medical malpractice petition before the limitations period expired. Because Lambert failed to present evidence establishing a genuine issue of material fact regarding the date of the filing, the court held the district court properly dismissed her petition.

Appeal No. 118,427: State of Kansas v. Joshua J. Robertson

Summary calendar; no oral argument

The Supreme Court affirmed Butler County District Court's summary dismissal of Robertson's motions to correct an illegal sentence and dismiss for lack of jurisdiction. The court concluded a motion to correct an illegal sentence cannot be used to collaterally attack a conviction based on allegations a defective complaint meant the district court lacked jurisdiction to convict. The district court also lacked jurisdiction to consider Robertson's motion to dismiss.

Kansas Court of Appeals decisions released today


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