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State v. Clawson

Supreme Court of Montana

July 3, 2018

STATE OF MONTANA, Plaintiff and Appellee,
v.
SLADE ALLEN CLAWSON, Defendant and Appellant.

          Submitted on Briefs: June 13, 2018

          APPEAL FROM: District Court of the Fourth Judicial District, In and For the County of Missoula, Cause Nos. DC 14-239 and DC 15-16 Honorable John W. Larson, Presiding Judge

          For Appellant: Chad Wright, Appellate Defender, Eileen A. Larkin, Assistant Appellate Defender, Helena, Montana

          For Appellee: Timothy C. Fox, Montana Attorney General, Ryan Aikin, Assistant Attorney General, Helena, Montana

          Kirsten H. Pabst, Missoula County Attorney, Missoula, Montana

          OPINION

          INGRID GUSTAFSON JUSTICE.

         ¶1 Slade Allen Clawson (Clawson) appeals from the Judgments entered in the Fourth Judicial District Court, Missoula County, following his guilty pleas to felony driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) in violation of § 61-8-401(1)(a), MCA, and misdemeanor driving while license suspended or revoked in violation of § 61-5-212(1)(a)(i), MCA, in DC 14-239 and to felony bail jumping in violation of § 45-7-308, MCA, in DC 15-16. We affirm in part, reverse in part, and remand as follows.

         ¶2 We restate the issues on appeal as follows:

1. Whether the District Court violated Clawson's due process rights to have judgment rendered in a reasonable time after entering his guilty pleas by granting Clawson's motions to continue sentencing?
2. Whether the District Court erroneously included a public defender fee in each of its two written Judgments after orally stating it would impose only a single fee?
3. Whether the District Court erroneously imposed an information technology surcharge on a per-count basis in DC 14-239?

         FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

         ¶3 On May 5, 2014, Clawson was charged in DC 14-239 with one felony and three misdemeanor offenses. He pled not guilty on May 15, 2014, and was ultimately released on bond on August 27, 2014. He subsequently failed to report to a court-ordered Sobriety and Accountability Program resulting in revocation of his bond and issuance of a warrant for his arrest. He was re-arrested September 29, 2014. On January 16, 2015, he was charged with felony bail jumping in DC 15-16.

         ¶4 On April 23, 2015, Clawson and the State entered into plea agreements whereby Clawson agreed to plead guilty to Count I, DUI, a felony, and Count II, driving while license is suspended or revoked, a misdemeanor, in DC 14-239, and to bail jumping, a felony, the sole offense in DC 15-16; the State agreed to dismiss Counts III and IV of DC 14-239. The plea agreement provided the parties would recommend a 13-month Department of Corrections (DOC) commitment with the remainder suspended upon completion of a residential alcohol treatment program, a five-year DOC commitment, all suspended to run consecutive to the initial 13-month commitment, and a $1, 000 fine for Count I of DC 14-239, and a six-month commitment to ...


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