Division III: Court Adopts Commute Rule for Pummeling - No License Revocation Unless Nexus
You have to love any opinion that starts out with a literal pummeling. In this case, it was the pummeling of his estranged wife’s ex-boyfriend, which really takes any of the humor out of it.
This case is also about the sufficiency of evidence needed for a conviction. Those of you that a been following this blog for any length of time no that 99% of sufficiency cases go absolutely nowhere. This one is no exception. I won’t bore you with the details.
The interesting part of this opinion has to do with the fact that after the conviction, the defendants drivers license was revoked by the Department of licensing, at the direction of the trial court. The statute allows revocation of the license if a motor vehicle was used in the commission of a crime. Here, the defendant used his vehicle to take them to the crime, but is that used in accomplishing the crime? This is not like the case where a firearm was concealed in a vehicle. Nor is it like the necessary use of a car when you drive a car without the owner’s permission. However, the car wasn’t a necessary part of this criminal circumstance, as he could’ve walked, rode a bike, or made his way there otherwise. Other states have followed the same logic, that there has to be more than just using the car for transportation to the location where crime occurred.
As such, while the defendant remains convicted of the pummeling, he will at least still have his license.