20 March 2007

Virginia Court of Appeal (Jan07)

Flowers v. Commonwealth, No. 2158-05-3, Opinion: Judge Humphreys, Trial Judge: Malfourd Trumbo

Evidence is sufficient to establish reckless endangerment of a minor when a person discovers that a child appears to be in distress from taking a drug and does not arrange for immediate medical treatment or contact the nearest parent and inform that parent of the problem.

Phelps v. Commonwealth, No. 2739-05-1. Opinion: Judge Beales, Trial Judge: Samuel Powell

The reckless driving statute, Va. Code sec. 46.2-817(B), requires that "a" person be endangered and applies even if the only person endangered was the driver.

Bishop v. Commonwealth, No. 1382-05-1, Opinion: Judge Kelsey, Trial Judge: Samuel Powell

When the defendant's DMV record shows him declared a Habitual Offender (driving) in 1997 and shows notice in 2001 of the date of declaration with the note "FOR HO DETERMINATION" there is enough evidence to find the defendant has had notice that he has been declared a habitual offender.

The fact that Obstruction of Justice can be charged as a misdemeanor under Va. Code sec. 18.2-460(B) or a felony under Va. Code sec. 18.2-460(C) for the same facts and circumstances and therefore gives the prosecution broad prosecutorial discretion does not render the statute a violation of the due process or equal protection clauses.

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