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State v. Carney

Court of Appeals of Iowa

October 11, 2017

STATE OF IOWA, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
KIRSTEN MARIE CARNEY, Defendant-Appellant.

         Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Scott County, Mary E. Howes, Judge.

         Kristen Carney appeals her convictions for drug-related charges.

          G. Brian Weiler, Davenport, for appellant.

          Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, and Bridget A. Chambers, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee.

          Heard by Danilson, C.J., Doyle, J., and Goodhue, S.J. [*]

          GOODHUE, Senior Judge.

         Kristen Carney was found guilty of eleven counts of drug-related charges. Carney appeals. We affirm.

         I. Background Facts and Proceedings

         Carney's vehicle was stopped by the police on October 8, 2013, based on their knowledge that her operator's license had been suspended. Her car was searched, and numerous bottles of prescription pills, as well as multiple paper prescriptions for the pills, were found. A search warrant was obtained for Carney's home, and more prescribed pills-as well as 113 paper prescriptions- were found, some of which law enforcement determined had been forged.

         On October 9, a complaint was filed that included six drug-related charges, which were alleged to have taken place on October 8, 2013. On November 13, the State moved to dismiss the charges "in the interest of justice, " alleging, "New information has come to light regarding the defendant's involvement in obtaining additional fraudulent prescriptions" and "subpoenas have been issued to gather documentation reflecting further criminal acts committed by the defendant." The motion to dismiss was granted on the same day it was filed, based on the assertions of the State and without any type of hearing or notice to Carney.

         On March 20, 2014, the State filed a trial information charging Carney with fifteen drug-related offenses. Carney filed a motion to dismiss for violation of her speedy-trial and speedy-indictment rights, as well as her due-process rights to be heard on the initial dismissal. She maintained the State should be barred from refiling the charges. A motion to suppress certain evidence was filed with the notice to dismiss. Both requests were denied, but the motion to suppress was not included in Carney's brief on appeal.

         An evidentiary hearing on the motion to dismiss the new charges was held. Four of the original fifteen counts were dismissed by the State for various reasons. The parties then stipulated that Carney would go to trial before the court on the basis of the minutes of evidence attached to the trial information. Carney was found guilty on all eleven counts remaining.

         Carney contends the State did not establish the prior dismissal was made in the interest of justice but was instead filed to evade the speedy-trial deadline. Carney also contended the dismissal of the prior charges without notice to her was a denial of her due-process rights.

         II. ...


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