State v. Pacheco

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The doctrine of collateral estoppel did not bar the state from prosecuting a chemical breath test refusal under R.I. Gen. Laws 31-37-2.1. Defendant was convicted of unlawful possession of marijuana and a chemical refusal. The Supreme Court remanded the case to the superior court for an evidentiary hearing on the issue of whether Defendant’s motion to dismiss on grounds of collateral estoppel was timely. The superior court found that Defendant’s motion was untimely filed but that there was good cause for the delay. Before the Supreme Court, Defendant argued that the state was collaterally estopped from prosecuting the chemical refusal because the facts at issue were decided in the Traffic Tribunal. The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of conviction, holding that collateral estoppel did not apply under the circumstances of this case. View "State v. Pacheco" on Justia Law