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Sena (Christopher) V. State, 138 Nev. Adv. Op. 34 (May 26, 2022), Servando Martinez Jul 2022

Sena (Christopher) V. State, 138 Nev. Adv. Op. 34 (May 26, 2022), Servando Martinez

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

In an opinion drafted by Justice Herndon, the Court clarified their application of the statute of limitations to crimes involving sexual abuse of children, concluding that the statute of limitations did not preclude any of the charges originally brought against Sena and that, under the doctrine of lenity, the unit of prosecution is per victim, not per instance. Therefore, the Court vacated six of the nine incest convictions, two counts of possession of visual presentation depicting the sexual conduct of a child, and one count of child abuse or neglect. The Court ultimately remanded this case for further proceedings.


Valdez-Jimenez V. Eighth Jud. Dist. Ct.,136 Nev. Adv. Op. 20 (April 9, 2020), Katrina Weil Apr 2020

Valdez-Jimenez V. Eighth Jud. Dist. Ct.,136 Nev. Adv. Op. 20 (April 9, 2020), Katrina Weil

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined what process is constitutionally required when a district court sets bail in an amount that the defendant cannot afford, resulting in pretrial detention. The Court found that bail may only be imposed where it is necessary to reasonably ensure the defendant’s appearance at court proceedings or to reasonably protect the community. If a defendant remains in custody after arrest they are (1) entitled to an individualized hearing, where (2) the State must prove by clear and convincing evidence that bail, rather than less restrictive conditions, is necessary to ensure the defendant’s appearance at future court proceedings or …


Martinez Guzman V. Second Judicial Dist. Court, 136 Nev. Adv. Op. 12 (Mar. 26, 2020), John Mccormick-Huhn Mar 2020

Martinez Guzman V. Second Judicial Dist. Court, 136 Nev. Adv. Op. 12 (Mar. 26, 2020), John Mccormick-Huhn

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court clarified the ambiguity of the meaning “territorial jurisdiction,” a term of art found in NRS 172.105. The Court held that NRS 172.105 incorporates Nevada’s venue statutes and grants a grand jury the authority to “inquire into a [criminal] offense so long as the district court that empaneled the grand jury may appropriately adjudicate the defendant’s guilt for that particular offense.”


Republican Attorneys General Association V. Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, 136 Nev. Adv. Op. 3 (Feb. 20, 2020), Nicholas Hagenkord Feb 2020

Republican Attorneys General Association V. Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, 136 Nev. Adv. Op. 3 (Feb. 20, 2020), Nicholas Hagenkord

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined that (1) the district court did not err in denying appellant Republican Attorneys General Association’s (RAGA) petition for a writ of mandamus under the Nevada Public Records Act (NPRA) seeking bodycam footage regarding juveniles and former State Senator Aaron Ford’s interactions with police; and (2) the district court abused its discretion in denying RAGA’s request for other requested records by not assessing whether these records contain any nonconfidential material.


Cabrera V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 65 (Dec. 26, 2019), Trisha Delos Santos Jan 2020

Cabrera V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 65 (Dec. 26, 2019), Trisha Delos Santos

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined that the plain language of NRS § 194.010(8) cannot be interpreted to limit the duress defense with respect to crimes that are not punishable with death, regardless of the relationship between those crimes and another crime that is punishable with death.


High Desert State Prison V. Sanchez, 135 Nev., Adv. Op. 68 (Dec. 26, 2019), Jeff Garrett Jan 2020

High Desert State Prison V. Sanchez, 135 Nev., Adv. Op. 68 (Dec. 26, 2019), Jeff Garrett

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

NRS § 209.4465 does not allow for good time served to be credited for those who commit child lewdness. The Court held that in order for a violation to be a continuous crime, the statute must be explicitly label the crime as continuous. Here, Respondent’s time served had been properly calculated by the district court because Respondent’s violation was codified as a one-time offense and occurred before the 2007 amendment to NRS § 209.4465. The language of the violated statutes define attempted lewdness with a child to be a one-time offense and not a continuous offense. Furthermore, the State’s assertion …


Gathrite V. Eighth Jud. Dist. Ct., 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 54 (Nov. 7, 2019), Skylar Arakawa-Pamphilon Nov 2019

Gathrite V. Eighth Jud. Dist. Ct., 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 54 (Nov. 7, 2019), Skylar Arakawa-Pamphilon

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

For purposes of NRS 172.135(2), evidence that has been suppressed in justice court proceedings on a felony complaint is not “legal evidence,” and therefore, may not be presented to a grand jury. The Court will grant an exception to this rule if the suppression was reversed before the grand jury proceedings.


Witter V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 73444 (Nov. 14, 2019), John Bays Nov 2019

Witter V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 73444 (Nov. 14, 2019), John Bays

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined that (1) a judgment of conviction containing a restitution provision must contain the specific amount of restitution required; (2) a judgment of conviction containing an indeterminate restitution provision is not a final judgement for purposes of appeal or for purposes of triggering the deadline for filing a habeas petition; and (3) the principle of finality requires that even when such an error is made, if the defendant treats the judgment as final by litigating, the defendant is estopped from later arguing that judgment was not final and that subsequent proceedings were null and void for lack of …


Newson V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 50 (Oct. 10, 2019), Richard Young Oct 2019

Newson V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 50 (Oct. 10, 2019), Richard Young

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined although the district court has broad discretion to settle jury instructions, the failure to instruct the jury on a defendant’s theory of a case that is supported by any evidence warrants reversal unless the error was harmless.


State Bd. Of Parole Comm’Rs V. Second Judicial Dist. Court, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 53 (Oct. 24, 2019) (En Banc), Dallas Anselmo Oct 2019

State Bd. Of Parole Comm’Rs V. Second Judicial Dist. Court, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 53 (Oct. 24, 2019) (En Banc), Dallas Anselmo

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court confronted several issues in this methodical decision. The Court addressed standing and discretionary review in the context of writ petitions. It next analyzes and determines the applicable version of a particular NRS section. Finally, the Court interprets the applicable version of the statute. The opinion culminates in the granting of a writ of mandamus petition for the Parole Board to correct an inaccurate application of law at the district court level.


Castillo V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 16 (May. 30, 2019), E. Sebastian Cate-Cribari Sep 2019

Castillo V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 16 (May. 30, 2019), E. Sebastian Cate-Cribari

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined that (1) a defendant is death-eligible in Nevada once the State proves beyond a reasonable doubt the elements of first-degree murder and at least one statutory aggravating circumstance; and (2) the beyond-a-reasonable-doubt standard does not apply to the weighing of aggravating and mitigating circumstances.


Bowser V. State Of Nevada, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 15 (May 16, 2019), Andrew Brown Sep 2019

Bowser V. State Of Nevada, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 15 (May 16, 2019), Andrew Brown

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court overruled precedent which held that a presumption of vindictiveness applies when a judge imposes a longer sentence after a new trial.


Anderson (Arnold) V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 37 (Sept. 5, 2019), Alexandra Matloff Sep 2019

Anderson (Arnold) V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 37 (Sept. 5, 2019), Alexandra Matloff

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court held that if a trial court determines by a preponderance of the evidence that a witness is unable to testify because the defendant wrongfully procured the witness’s unavailability and acted with intent to do so, the forfeiture-by-wrongdoing exception can be applied in order to deny a defendant’s rights under the Confrontation Clause of the Sixth Amendment. The Court also held that in determining whether the forfeiture-by-wrongdoing exception applies, the trial court must hear the opposing parties’ arguments in the absence of a jury.


Hager V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 34 (Aug. 29, 2019), Brittney Lehtinen Sep 2019

Hager V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 34 (Aug. 29, 2019), Brittney Lehtinen

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined that (1) Defendants who successfully complete mental health specialty court diversion programs pursuant to NRS § 176A.250–265 are not “adjudicated mentally ill” under NRS § 202.360(2)(1); and (2) that the jury should have been instructed that under NRS § 202.360(1)(d), an “unlawful user” is someone who regularly uses substances over a period of time consistent with their possession of a firearm.


Andersen V. Eighth Judicial Dist. Court, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 42 (Sept. 12, 2019) (En Banc), Erika Smolyar Sep 2019

Andersen V. Eighth Judicial Dist. Court, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 42 (Sept. 12, 2019) (En Banc), Erika Smolyar

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

In light of recent statutes limiting the right to bear arms for people convicted of misdemeanor battery constituting domestic violence, the Court determined that because the Legislature reclassified misdemeanor battery in that context to constitute a serious offense, those convicted of it are entitled to a jury trial.


Franks (Kenneth) V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 1 (Jan. 3, 2019), Scott Whitworth Jan 2019

Franks (Kenneth) V. State, 135 Nev. Adv. Op. 1 (Jan. 3, 2019), Scott Whitworth

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court reviewed whether a district court’s decision to allow the State to introduce prior incidents of uncharged sexual acts as evidence of the defendant’s propensity for committing sexual offenses violated NRS 48.045(3) and concluded such evidence as long as it is first evaluated for relevance and its heightened risk of unfair prejudice.


Harris V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 107 (Dec. 27, 2018) (En Banc), Yilmaz Turkeri Dec 2018

Harris V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 107 (Dec. 27, 2018) (En Banc), Yilmaz Turkeri

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court considered whether the admission of gruesome photographs showing the disfigured bodies of the victims following their deaths and the subsequent autopsies amounted to an abuse of the district court’s discretion. The Court concluded that admission of these photographs was an abuse of the district court’s discretion.


State V. Brown (Taren), 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 102 (Dec. 20, 2018), Tracie Jefcik Dec 2018

State V. Brown (Taren), 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 102 (Dec. 20, 2018), Tracie Jefcik

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court interpreted the good cause showing requirements in NRS 177.015(2) and defined two of the statute’s key phrases: (1) the phrase “propriety of the appeal” means that an appeal is not taken for the purpose of delay, and (2) the phrase “miscarriage of justice” means that suppression of evidence would significantly impair or terminate the State’s ability to prosecute the case. Finding that the State in this case failed to demonstrate good cause, the Court dismissed the appeal.


Rodriguez (Juan) V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 95 (Dec. 6, 2018) (En Banc), Jessica Story Dec 2018

Rodriguez (Juan) V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 95 (Dec. 6, 2018) (En Banc), Jessica Story

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court held that NRS 200.481(2)(b) is not an enhancement statute and so a sentence for battery resulting in substantial bodily harm with a consecutive sentence for the older-person enhancement is not double sentencing.


State V. Dist. Ct. (Ojeda (Francisco)), 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 94 (Dec. 6, 2018) (En Banc), Myrra Dvorak Dec 2018

State V. Dist. Ct. (Ojeda (Francisco)), 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 94 (Dec. 6, 2018) (En Banc), Myrra Dvorak

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court focused on the issue of whether a district court can grant a motion to compel disclosure of criminal background information of veniremembers gathered by the prosecution. The Court determined that a district court has the authority to order the prosecution to share criminal background information of veniremembers obtained from databases that the defense cannot access.


State V. Plunkett, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 88 (Nov. 15, 2018) (En Banc), Austin Maul Nov 2018

State V. Plunkett, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 88 (Nov. 15, 2018) (En Banc), Austin Maul

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court held that NRS 212.165(4) imposes criminal liability on nonprisoners who assist prisoners in jail possessing cellphones.


Williams V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 83 (Oct. 25, 2018), Arthur Burn Oct 2018

Williams V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 83 (Oct. 25, 2018), Arthur Burn

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined that (1) a district court must perform a comprehensive three-step analysis when a defendant challenges the use of race in peremptory strikes and that (2) a district court should hold a hearing when a defendant seeks to admit evidence showing that a minor victim could have contrived sexual abuse allegations.


Warren, Jr. (Joseph) V. Eighth Judicial Dist. Court, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 77 (Sep. 27, 2018) (En Banc), James Puccinelli Sep 2018

Warren, Jr. (Joseph) V. Eighth Judicial Dist. Court, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 77 (Sep. 27, 2018) (En Banc), James Puccinelli

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined that NRS § 177.015(1)(a) authorizes the State to appeal from a justice court dismissal of a criminal complaint because such a decision is a final judgment, and that NRS § 178.562(2) does not limit the State’s remedies to appeal a justice court’s decision to dismiss a criminal complaint because this provision does not mention final judgment.


Ibarra Vs. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 70 (Sept. 13, 2018) (En Banc), Whitney Jones Sep 2018

Ibarra Vs. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 70 (Sept. 13, 2018) (En Banc), Whitney Jones

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined a defendant can be convicted of larceny from the person when a defendant fraudulently persuades a person to temporarily hand over their property, when in fact the defendant intends to permanently take the person’s property without the person’s consent for purposes of NRS 205.270(1).


Dunham (John) V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 68 (Sept. 6, 2018), Katrina Brandhagen Sep 2018

Dunham (John) V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 68 (Sept. 6, 2018), Katrina Brandhagen

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined that the word “resides” in NRS 205.067(5)(b) does not require that the owner of a dwelling live permanently or continuously in the dwelling. The Court also held that the sentence of a maximum of 96 months in prison with parole eligibility after 38 months imposed on the appellant when a jury convicted him of home invasion, was not cruel and unusual punishment.


Mathews V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 63 (Aug. 23, 2018), Christi Dupont Aug 2018

Mathews V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 63 (Aug. 23, 2018), Christi Dupont

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court clarified the requirements for the introduction of an expert witness under NRS 50.275. Moreover, the Court concluded that the district court abused its discretion when it improperly applied the Hallmark factors and disqualified Dr. Johnson from testifying. Accordingly, the Court granted the defendant a new trial.


Richard V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 64 (Aug. 23, 2018), Kaila Patrick Aug 2018

Richard V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 64 (Aug. 23, 2018), Kaila Patrick

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court determined that a declarant must have testified and have been subject to cross-examination about a specific out-of-court statement for it to be excluded from the definition of hearsay as a prior inconsistent statement or identification. Further, the Court held that the errors of admission made by the district court were harmless.


Rippo V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 53 (Aug. 2, 2018) (En Banc), Shady Sirsy Aug 2018

Rippo V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 53 (Aug. 2, 2018) (En Banc), Shady Sirsy

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court held that the appellant’s petition challenging his conviction for two first-degree murders and death sentences was both untimely and successive. Further, it affirmed the district court’s denial of the appellant’s petition as procedurally barred and determined that Rippo did not show good cause and prejudice to excuse the procedural bars to his petition. The United States Supreme Court vacated the Court’s opinion and remanded for further proceedings, reasoning that the Court applied the wrong legal standard as to Rippo’s judicial bias claim. On reconsideration, the Court held that an evidentiary hearing was required with respect to several issues …


Hubbard (Cory) V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 54 (Aug. 2, 2018) (En Banc), Matthew J. Mckissick Aug 2018

Hubbard (Cory) V. State, 134 Nev. Adv. Op. 54 (Aug. 2, 2018) (En Banc), Matthew J. Mckissick

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court held that intent is automatically at issue for specific-intent crimes. Therefore, criminal defendants need not place intent or absence of mistake at issue before the State seeks to admit prior act evidence if the evidence is relevant to prove an essential element of the offense (i.e., intent for the crime of burglary). However, prior act evidence may still be inadmissible where its minimal probative value is substantially outweighed by the risk of unfair prejudice.


Cooper V. State, 134 Nev. 52 (July 26, 2018) (En Banc), Xheni Ristani Jul 2018

Cooper V. State, 134 Nev. 52 (July 26, 2018) (En Banc), Xheni Ristani

Nevada Supreme Court Summaries

The Court invoked its supervisory powers and adopted a rule of admissibility to limit the use of a probationer’s testimony in a subsequent criminal proceeding.