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McHugh v. Reid

Court of Appeals of Idaho

April 16, 2014

BARRY McHUGH, KOOTENAI COUNTY PROSECUTING ATTORNEY, Plaintiff-Respondent,
v.
JEFFREY A. REID AND SANDRA M. SNYDER-REID, Parties Aggrieved-Appellants, and ONE BLUE 2007 TOYOTA FJ CRUISER, VIN NO. JTEBU11F470014172, AND ONE THOUSAND, SEVEN HUNDRED DOLLARS AND ZERO CENTS ($1,700.00) OF LAWFUL U.S. CURRENCY, Defendants

Page 999

2014 Opinion No. 28

Appeal from the District Court of the First Judicial District, State of Idaho, Kootenai County. Hon. Benjamin R. Simpson, District Judge.

Judgment of civil forfeiture, vacated and remanded.

Nicolas V. Vieth, Coeur d'Alene, for appellants.

Barry McHugh, Kootenai County Prosecuting Attorney; Jamila D. Holmes, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney, Coeur d'Alene, for respondent. Jamila D. Holmes argued.

MELANSON, Judge. Chief Judge GUTIERREZ and Judge LANSING, CONCUR.

OPINION

Page 1000

[156 Idaho 301] MELANSON, Judge

Jeffrey A. Reid and Sandra M. Snyder-Reid appeal from the judgment of civil forfeiture of the Reids' 2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser. Specifically, they assert that the district court erred in partially granting Kootenai County Prosecuting Attorney Barry McHugh's motion for summary judgment with regard to the vehicle. For the reasons set forth below, we vacate and remand.

I.

FACTS AND PROCEDURE

Jeffrey Reid was stopped while driving his 2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser after an officer observed him speeding. The officer had been on the lookout for the vehicle after receiving a report that the individual driving the vehicle had allegedly dumped marijuana plants on the side of the road. During a consensual search of the vehicle, loose green plant material identified as marijuana was found. Reid was arrested and the vehicle was impounded. Near the same time, a detective went to the Reids' home and received consent to search

Page 1001

[156 Idaho 302] the home from Reid's wife, Sandra Snyder-Reid. The search revealed marijuana, paraphernalia, $1,700 in cash, and equipment for growing marijuana.

Reid pled guilty to delivery of a controlled substance, I.C. § 37-2732(a)(1)(A), and Snyder-Reid pled guilty to manufacturing a controlled substance, I.C. § 37-2732(a)(1)(B). As part of a plea agreement, additional charges of trafficking in marijuana were dismissed. The district court withheld judgment and placed the Reids on supervised probation for three years.

While the criminal cases were pending, McHugh filed a complaint in rem seeking forfeiture of the vehicle, money, and hydroponic growing equipment found in the Reids' home. The Reids filed unverified answers, followed by a motion to dismiss the complaint approximately two months later in which they claimed that McHugh had failed to set the matter for a hearing. The district court held a hearing and denied the motion to dismiss, finding that I.C. § 37-2744 did not require McHugh to set the matter for a hearing within a specified timeframe.

McHugh subsequently filed a motion for summary judgment, which the district court granted as to the vehicle and denied as to the money. The Reids filed a motion to reconsider the denial of their motion to dismiss, which the district court denied. McHugh was granted ...


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