Summary of Decision May 7, 2014
Justice Hill delivered the opinion of the Court. Dismissed.
Case Name: MARK W. HITZ v. THE STATE OF WYOMING
Docket Number: S-13-0190
Appeal from the District Court of Laramie County, the Honorable Steven K. Sharpe, Judge
Representing Appellant: Mark W. Hitz, pro se.
Representing Appellee: Peter K. Michael, Wyoming Attorney General; David L. Delicath, Deputy Attorney General; and Caitlin Wallace, Assistant Attorney General.
Date of Decision: May 7, 2014
Facts: Mark Hitz was placed on probation for a felony larceny conviction, subject to placement in an adult community correctional facility. A little over a month after that placement, Hitz checked out of the facility and failed to return. Hitz pled guilty to felony escape from official detention, his probation was revoked, and he was sentenced on both the larceny and escape convictions.
Approximately a year and a half after the district court reinstated Hitz’s felony larceny sentence and imposed a sentence for the escape conviction, Hitz filed a combined Rule 35 motion for sentence reduction and motion for injunction. Through the motion for injunction, Hitz sought an order enjoining the Wyoming Board of Parole from interpreting Wyoming law in a manner that would preclude him from parole eligibility. The district court ordered that it lacked authority to rule on Hitz’s Rule 35 motion on the ground that the motion was untimely, depriving the court of jurisdiction. The court also ruled that it lacked jurisdiction to review the Board of Parole’s interpretation of Wyoming law or to consider Hitz’s request for injunctive relief.
Issue: Hitz submitted a pro se appeal and did not include a statement of the issue. The State framed the issue on appeal as follows: After a criminal case concludes, district courts retain limited jurisdiction over the defendant. They can only consider the motions provided for in the Rules of Criminal Procedure and, for even these motions, the courts are restricted by the parameters the Rules establish. For example, a motion for sentence reduction must be filed within one year of sentencing. Did the district court properly deny Hitz’s motion for sentence reduction as untimely and correctly deny his motion for lack of jurisdiction?
Holdings/Conclusion: We conclude that the district court was without subject matter jurisdiction to consider Hitz’s combined motion for sentence reduction and injunctive relief and that, consequently, this Court is without jurisdiction to consider this appeal. The appeal is dismissed.
Summaries are prepared by Law Librarians and are not official statements of the Wyoming Supreme Court.
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Wednesday, May 07, 2014
Summary of Decision May 7, 2014