State v. Kealoha

Because restitution is part of the “maximum penalty provided by law” and is a direct consequence of conviction, defendants must be appropriately advised and questioned in open court regarding their understanding of this possibility before a court can accept their guilty or no contest plea. In a plea agreement with the State, to which the circuit court agreed to be bound, Defendant agreed to plead guilty in three criminal cases, provided that he would be sentenced to certain terms of imprisonment. On appeal, Defendant argued that the circuit court violated the agreement by also sentencing him to pay restitution. The intermediate court of appeals affirmed. The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant’s convictions without prejudice to him filing a Hawai’i Rule of Penal Procedure Rule 40 petition in the circuit court, holding (1) courts must advise defendants that restitution is a possible consequence of conviction before accepting their pleas; and (2) although the circuit court did not conduct a proper colloquy in Defendant’s case, Defendant never filed an appropriate motion in the circuit court. View "State v. Kealoha" on Justia Law

Posted in: Criminal Law

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