The Kansas Supreme Court announced the two cases it will hear in a special session Monday, Oct. 3, in Parsons, which is the next destination in the court’s outreach to familiarize Kansans with the high court, its work and the overall role of the Kansas judiciary.
The court will be in session from 6:30 to about 8 p.m. that day in the auditorium at Parsons High School, 3030 Morton Ave. After the session concludes, justices will greet the public in an informal reception.
The two cases on the October 3 docket are:
— Appeal No. 123,077: State of Kansas v. Richard I. Moler II. In this petition for review, a Hamilton County jury convicted Moler of two counts of violating the Kansas Offender Registration Act by failing to include in his registration information two vehicles that local police observed him driving. In the Court of Appeals, Moler argued the evidence was insufficient to support the convictions for two reasons. First, he argued the state established only that he drove each vehicle once, which he contended was insufficient to trigger a duty to register them. Second, he argued the evidence did not establish each of the allegations contained in the charges. Moler also claimed his trial counsel was ineffective. The Court of Appeals affirmed his convictions.
Issues on review are whether the Court of Appeals erred in finding: There was sufficient evidence for a conviction because Moler was not required by law to register vehicles he drove only one time; and there was sufficient evidence when the state charged that Moler’s registration obligation arose from a prior conviction but arose from a prior juvenile adjudication.
— Appeal No. 120,566: State of Kansas v. Justin Burke Eckert. In this cross petition for review, a Miami County jury convicted Eckert of aggravated kidnapping, aggravated battery, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, criminal threat, cultivation of marijuana and 25 counts of possession of drug paraphernalia. Eckert appealed several issues directly to the Court of Appeals, and the Court of Appeals agreed with Eckert in part and affirmed the district court in part. Both parties petitioned the Supreme Court for review. The Supreme Court granted the state’s cross-petition and Eckert’s conditional cross-petition.
Issues on review are whether: The Court of Appeals erred in finding Eckert’s drug paraphernalia convictions were multiplicitous; and whether there was sufficient evidence to support Eckert’s conviction involving the use of propane and a blower attached to the propane tank as drug paraphernalia.
Anyone who wants to attend the special session should plan to arrive early to allow time to get through security screening. The doors open at 5:30 p.m. Court security offers these guidelines to ease the process:
— Do not bring food or drink.
— Do not bring large bags, large purses, backpacks, computer cases, or briefcases; small handbags are permitted.
— Do not bring knives, pepper spray, firearms, or weapons.
— Do not bring electronic devices like laptop computers, handheld games, personal digital assistants, or tablets. If you must carry a cell phone, turn it off and store it out of sight while the court is in session.
Audience members are prohibited from talking during oral arguments because it interferes with the attorneys’ remarks and questions asked by justices. If someone arrives after proceedings start, or must leave the auditorium before it ends, they should be as quiet as possible entering and exiting the auditorium. Talking immediately outside the auditorium is also discouraged.
The special session will also be broadcast live online at www.YouTube.com/KansasSupremeCourt.
The Supreme Court has conducted special sessions outside its Topeka courtroom since 2011, when it marked the state’s 150th anniversary by convening in the historic Supreme Court courtroom in the Kansas Statehouse. From there, and through the end of 2011, the court conducted special sessions in Greensburg, Salina and Wichita. Since then, the court has had sessions in Colby, El Dorado, Emporia, Garden City, Great Bend, Hays, Hiawatha, Hutchinson, Kansas City, Lawrence, Manhattan, Overland Park, Pittsburg, Topeka and Winfield.