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Azcourts.gov

Arizona Judicial Branch

Criminal

 Rules of Criminal Procedure

Please note that the first four rules in this section apply only to capital cases.

 Rule  Will Affect  Summary and Impact 

Rule 6.8

R-09-0033

Capital cases

AOC contact:

Mark Meltzer

Superior court

 

Judges

Admin

Rule 6.8 provides standards for the appointment of defense counsel in a capital case.

Rule 6.8(a) has been amended to permit an attorney’s practice in a federal jurisdiction, or in another state, to be considered for purposes of satisfying the experience requirements of this rule, if the attorney is a member in good standing of the State Bar of Arizona.

Amendments to Rule 6.8(c) establish different requirements for appellate counsel and for post-conviction relief counsel in a capital case. Paragraph (1) concerning appellate counsel provides among other things that counsel may, but need not, have experience in post-conviction proceedings. Paragraph (2) sets out two alternate ways that counsel can qualify as PCR counsel.

Impact:
 Superior court judges and administrators who deal with the appointment of counsel on the appeal of a capital case should confirm that counsel meet the qualifications provided in Rule 6.8(c)(1).  (Counsel on a capital case PCR proceeding are appointed by the Supreme Court.)


Rule 8.2(a)(4)

R-10-0012

Capital cases

AOC contact:
Mark Meltzer

Superior court

Judges

Clerks

Admin

Rule 8.2 provides speedy trial limits.  The amendment to Rule 8.2(a)(4) expands the speedy trial limit in a capital case from 18 months from the date of arraignment, to 24 months from the date that the State files a notice of its intent to seek the death penalty.

Impact:
 The speedy trial limit in a capital murder is longer than the limit in a non-capital murder case.  A notice of intent to seek the death penalty must be filed within 60 days after arraignment on a murder charge (or a longer period, if there has been a stipulation pursuant to Rule 15(i)(1).)  Once a notice of intent has been filed, the speedy trial limit must be recalculated pursuant to this amended rule


Rule 31.13(f)

R-09-0032


Capital cases

AOC contact:

Mark Meltzer

Supreme Court

Justices

Clerks

Admin

Superior court

Judges

The amendments to this rule change the time periods for filing appellate briefs in a capital case, as follows:

  • For appellant’s opening brief:

From:  within 70 days after the mailing of the notice as provided for by Rule 31.10
To:  within 90 days after the court issues a notice that the record is complete

  • For appellee’s response:

From:  within 40 days after service of the appellant's brief
To:  within 60 days after service of the appellant's brief

  • For appellant’s reply:

From: within 20 days after service of appellee's brief
To: within 30 days after service of appellee's brief

 

Impact:  Due dates for appellate briefs in a capital case must be calculated according to the times specified in the amended rule.


Rule 32.10

R-10-0010

Capital cases

AOC contact:

Mark Meltzer

Court of Appeals

Superior Court

 

Judges

Clerks

Rule 32.10 is a newly promulgated rule.  Please note that existing Rule 31.10 (“Extensions of time; notification of victims”) has now been renumbered as Rule 32.11.

New rule 32.10 provides that within ten days after the trial court makes a finding of mental retardation during a proceeding for post-conviction relief in a capital case, the State or the defendant may file a petition for special action with the court of appeals. The filing of the petition for special action is governed by the rules of procedure for special actions, except that the court of appeals will exercise jurisdiction and it will decide the issue raised by the special action.

Impact:
 The special action petitioner will be required to join as a party the judicial officer against whom relief is sought, as well as the real party in interest.   Pursuant to the special action rules, the summons and complaint must be served as process is served under Rule 4, 4.1, or 4.2 of the Rules of Civil Procedure.


Rule 10.2

R-09-0037

AOC contact:

Mark Meltzer

Superior court

Judges

Clerks

Admin

The revisions to this rule now enable parties in capital as well as non-capital cases to utilize in the same manner the provisions in Rule 10.2 concerning a notice of change of judge upon request.

Impact:
 The words “in a non-death penalty case” have been deleted from Rule 10.2(c).  Text in Rule 10.2(a) that applied only in capital cases has also been deleted.  A party in a capital case, like a party in a non-capital case, may now use the right to a change of judge at the time when actual notice of the assignment of the case to another judge has been given. To be timely, the notice of change of judge must be filed within ten days, or if there are less than ten days before the trial, by 5 p.m. of the day following notice of the reassignment, or before the start of trial, whichever is sooner.


Rule 11.3

R-10-0026

Emergency effective date:

July 29, 2010

Open for comment until May 20, 2011

AOC contact:

Mark Meltzer

Superior court

Judges

Clerks

Admin

In conformity with a change to A.R.S. § 13-4505, Rule 11.3 has been amended so that “at least one” of “at least two” experts appointed for a Rule 11 exam no longer needs to be a psychiatrist, as previously required; although on motion of a party or upon the court’s motion, one of the experts may be a licensed psychiatrist.   Under the amended rule, the parties may also stipulate to the appointment of a single expert, but only with approval of the court.

Impact:
  Because psychologists, solely, may be appointed under the amended rule, each court needs to assure that it has a sufficient number of psychologists available for court appointments in Rule 11 proceedings.


Rule 13.1(c)

R-10-0003


AOC contact:

Mark Meltzer

Superior court

Judges

Clerks

Admin

A former version of Rule 13.1(c) concerned motions to dismiss an untimely filed information “under Rule 16.7(b).”   Rule 16.7(b) was repealed years ago, and in November 2009, this reference was changed to “under Rule 16.6(b).”   This rule petition raised the question whether the reference in Rule 13.1(c) should remain as Rule 16.6(b), which provides for dismissal of charging documents, or should be changed to Rule 16.1(b), the rule generally governing the filing of motions.    The question was decided by changing the reference in Rule 13.1(c) to Rule 16.1(b).

Impact:
 Rule 16.1(b) requires that all motions be made no later than 20 days prior to trial; the opposing party has 10 days within which to file a response.   A motion not timely raised under Rule 16.1(b) may be precluded under Rule 16.1(c).


Rule 31.15(b)

R-10-0005


AOC contact:

Mark Meltzer

Supreme Court

Court of Appeals

Superior court

Judges

Clerks

Admin

A provision in Rule 31.15(b), which stated that in cases where there is a want of prosecution, except in death penalty cases, “[n]o appeal shall be dismissed if the record on appeal is sufficient to enable the Appellate Court to decide the appeal on its merits,” has been removed from the rule.  This change is in conformity with A.R.S. § 13-4039, which provides: “If the appellant fails to prosecute the appeal, the appellate court shall dismiss the appeal.”

Impact:
 Except in death penalty cases, criminal appeals may be dismissed for lack of prosecution, provided that appropriate notice is given, as provided in the rule, to the appellant and appellant’s counsel if the appellant was a defendant at trial.