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Workman v. Rich

Court of Appeals of Idaho

August 31, 2017

KENNETH M. WORKMAN, Plaintiff-Appellant,

         2017 Opinion No. 42

         Appeal from the District Court of the Fourth Judicial District, State of Idaho, Ada County. Hon. Gerald F. Schroeder, District Judge. Hon. George G. Hicks, Magistrate.

         Order of the district court affirming magistrate decision to grant motion to dismiss; order of the district court affirming magistrate grant of summary judgment, affirmed.

          Kenneth M. Workman, Boise, pro se appellant.

          Jan M. Bennetts, Ada County Prosecuting Attorney; Ray J. Chacko, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney, Boise, for respondent, Christopher Rich.

          Hon. Lawrence G. Wasden, Attorney General; Kristina M. Schindele, Deputy Attorney General, Boise, for respondent, Idaho Department of Correction.


         Kenneth M. Workman appeals from the district court's order affirming the magistrate's decision to grant Christopher Rich's (Rich) motion to dismiss and the Idaho Department of Correction's (IDOC) motion for summary judgment.


         In 2001, Workman drove his vehicle off Interstate 84 and into two pickups parked on the side of the road. At the time of the crash, Workman was under the influence of heroin, methamphetamine, and THC. The owners of the pickups were standing between the vehicles at the time of the crash, and both owners suffered serious injuries. One person was thrown into the road and suffered major broken bones and a ruptured spleen. The other person was pinned between the vehicles, breaking one leg while the other leg was severed from his body. Workman was convicted of two counts of aggravated driving under the influence, Idaho Code § 18-8006, and being a persistent violator, I.C. § 19-2514, and was sentenced to two determinate life sentences. On April 28, 2003, the district court ordered Workman to pay $32, 391.44 in restitution, with interest accruing annually. The district court's order also provided that "this Order shall constitute a Civil Judgment against the defendant, KENNETH M. WORKMAN."

         The IDOC began deducting funds from Workman's inmate account on September 30, 2003. These funds were sent to Rich, the clerk of the district court in which Workman was convicted, for distribution to the victims. On December 30, 2015, Workman filed a pro se complaint, [1] in which he asserted that Rich and the IDOC improperly garnished money from his inmate account in order to pay the court-ordered restitution. Rich filed a motion to dismiss and the IDOC filed a motion for summary judgment.[2] The magistrate granted Rich's and the IDOC's motions. Workman appealed to the district court, and the district court affirmed the magistrate's decision. Workman timely appeals.

         II. ANALYSIS

         Workman argues that the restitution order entered against him has "expired, [is] unenforceable, uncollectable, and no longer still owing" because it is a civil judgment that was not renewed within five years of its entry. Workman further argues that I.C. §§ 19-4708 and 19-5305(2) do not apply to his restitution order because the statutes were amended subsequent to his judgment being entered. For an appeal from the district court, sitting in its appellate capacity over a case from the magistrate division, this Court's standard of review is the same as expressed by the Idaho Supreme Court. The Supreme Court reviews the magistrate record to determine whether there is substantial and competent evidence to support the magistrate's findings of fact and whether the magistrate's conclusions of law follow from those findings. State v. Korn, 148 Idaho 413, 415, 224 P.3d 480, 482 (2009). If those findings are so supported and the conclusions follow therefrom, and if the district court affirmed the magistrate's decision, we affirm the district court's decision as a matter of procedure. Id. Thus, the appellate courts do not review the decision of the magistrate. State v. Trusdall, 155 Idaho 965, 968, 318 P.3d 955, 958 (Ct. App. 2014). Rather, we are procedurally bound to affirm or reverse the decision of the district court. Id.

         As an appellate court, we will affirm a trial court's grant of an Idaho Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) motion where the record demonstrates that there are no genuine issues of material fact and the case can be decided as a matter of law. Coghlan v. Beta Theta Pi Fraternity, 133 Idaho 388, 398, 987 P.2d 300, 310 (1999). When reviewing an order of the district court dismissing a case pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6), the nonmoving party is entitled to have all inferences from the record and pleadings viewed in its favor, and only then may the question be asked whether a claim for relief has been stated. Coghlan, 133 Idaho at 398, 987 P.2d at 310. The issue is not whether the ...

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