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Draggin’ Y Cattle Company, Inc. v. Addink

Draggin’ Y Cattle Company, Inc. v. Addink, 2016 MT 98 (May 3, 2016) (Baker, J.; Rice, J., concurring; McKinnon, J., concurring & dissenting; McGrath, C.J. & Wheat, J., recused themselves) (5-0, appeal dismissed)

Issue: Whether New York Marine timely raised its disqualification claim, and if so, whether the claim should be considered on the merits given that the judge did not disclose circumstances that could cause the judge’s impartiality to be reasonably questioned.

Short Answer: Under these circumstances, the claim is not waived. The Court holds Judge Huss had a duty to disclose but declines to determine whether Judge Huss should have been disqualified for cause. It remands for determination of the disqualification issue by a district judge it will assign.…

Commissioner of Political Practices v. Bannan

Commissioner of Political Practices v. Bannan, 2015 MT 220 (Aug. 4, 2015) (Cotter, J.) (7-0, appeal dismissed)

Issue: Whether the Lewis & Clark County District Court had subject matter jurisdiction over the commissioner’s enforcement action against Bannan.

Short Answer: Yes, the district court had subject matter jurisdiction. The real issue on appeal is an issue of statutory interpretation, and this appeal is premature.

Appeal dismissed

Facts: Terry Bannan was an unsuccessful candidate for the Montana Legislature in the 2010 primary. Commissioner Motl issued a decision in January 2014, concluding there was sufficient evidence to demonstrate Bannan had violated various campaign practices and finance law warranting civil adjudication.

The commissioner forwarded his decision to the Lewis and Clark county attorney for consideration of pursuing an action against Bannan.…

State v. Violette

State v. Violette, 2015 MT 67 (Feb. 24, 2015) (McKinnon, J.) (5-0, appeal dismissed)

Issue: Whether state was required to elect between two offenses to avoid violating defendant’s protection from double jeopardy.

Short answer: No.

Appeal dismissed without prejudice

Facts: State charged Violette with aggravated assault and elder abuse.

Procedural Posture & Holding: Violette moved lower court for order that state had to elect between those offenses, arguing that prosecution for both offenses violated his protection from double jeopardy and Montana’s “multiple charges” statute, 46-11-410, MCA. District court denied motion, holding that elder abuse is neither lesser-included offense of aggravated assault nor specific instance of aggravated assault. Violette appeals, arguing that elder abuse is specific instance of aggravated assault, and the Supreme Court dismisses the appeal without prejudice and remands for trial.…