Oregon v. Garcia

Defendant Catherine Garcia was charged with two counts of interfering with a peace officer and one count of resisting arrest for her actions to prevent officers from arresting her boyfriend at a political march. At trial, defendant moved for a judgment of acquittal on the interfering counts, arguing that ORS 162.247(3) prohibited the state from charging her with both interfering and resisting arrest for the same acts. The trial court denied the motion, and the Court of Appeals reversed, agreeing with defendant that the legislature had intended to preclude double charging. On review, the Oregon Supreme Court was asked to determine the import of ORS 162.247(3)(a) and whether the trial court erred by denying defendant’s motion and submitting both sets of charges to the jury when, as the parties agreed, the statute would not permit conviction on both. The Court concluded ORS 162.247(3)(a) did not preclude the state from alleging interfering and resisting arrest as alternative charges, even when based on the same acts, and, when the defendant disputed the charges, that the trial court should submit both charges to the jury with an appropriate instruction or verdict form. In this case, the trial court properly submitted all the charges to the jury. Therefore, the Court reversed the decision of the Court of Appeals and affirmed the judgment of the circuit court. View "Oregon v. Garcia" on Justia Law