NOT FINAL UNTIL TIME EXPIRES FOR REHEARING
AND, IF FILED, DETERMINED
IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE SIXTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT
OF THE STATE OF
Appellant, Appeal No. CRC 07-9 APANO
Opinion filed ______________________.
Appeal from decision of the
County Judge John Carassas
C. Marie King, Esquire
Assistant State Attorney
ORDER AND OPINION
THIS MATTER is before the Court on the State’s appeal from an order entered by the Pinellas County Court dismissing the charge against the defendant. After reviewing the briefs and record, this Court reverses the order because the trial court failed to follow the proper procedure when it dismissed the charge.
On the day of the trial, the State requested a continuance because the arresting officer failed to appear for trial, although he was served and confirmed to appear. It seems he had quit the police force one week prior to the trial. The State requested the continuance so that it could “have an opportunity to have him come in.” TR. 4.
Instead of directly addressing the motion for continuance, the trial judge asked the State if it was going to nolle prosequi the case. The State said no. The trial judge then said the trial is ready to go and asked the State if it was ready to proceed. When the State said no, the trial judge sua sponte dismissed the charges.
The State claims this sua sponte dismissal of the charge was
error. We agree. The trial court failed to follow the correct procedure. See
e.g., State v. Madormo, No. CRC 05-47 APANO (
In addition, the record reveals that
before implicitly denying the State’s motion for continuance the trial court
failed to consider the appropriate factors. See Jenkins v. State, 872
So.2d 388 (
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that the order of dismissal is reversed, and this matter is remanded to the trial court for further action.
DONE AND ORDERED in
Joseph A. Bulone David A. Demers
Circuit Judge Circuit Judge
Cynthia J. Newton
cc: Officer of the State Attorney
Honorable Judge Carassas