The Utah Court of Appeal issued the decision in State v. Jimenez-Wiss. Defendant was charged with Felony DUI based on prior convictions. One of the convictions involved a case where Defendant was not represented by an attorney and no evidence was produced that Defendant waived the right to have an attorney. The District Court gleaned from the evidence that Defendant did intend to waiver the right to an attorney. Utah Court of Appeals disagreed.
The holding states:
“Because the State failed to meet its burden, the district court erred when it denied Jimenez-Wiss’s motion to strike the felony enhancement of her 2012 offense. We therefore vacate Jimenez- Wiss’s conviction on that offense and remand this matter for further proceedings.
¶27 Once the district court found that Jimenez-Wiss had produced evidence that she did not knowingly waive her right to counsel prior to her 2008 DUI conviction, the State bore the burden of establishing that she had waived that right. The only evidence before the district court—the Plea Document—does not demonstrate waiver by a preponderance of the evidence. Moreover, the multiple omissions in the Plea Document raise doubts concerning Jimenez-Wiss’s intentions—doubts our supreme court has held must be resolved against a finding of waiver. The district court therefore erred in denying Jimenez-Wiss’s motion to strike the felony enhancement of her 2012 DUI charge. We vacate Jimenez-Wiss’s conviction on the 2012 charge and remand this matter for further proceedings.”
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