State v. Coble

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State v. Coble

Case Number
S-17-0769
Call Date
February 8, 2018
Case Time
9:00 AM
Court Number
Lancaster
Case Location
Lincoln
Case Summary

S-17-0769 State v. Kaitlyn N. Coble (Appellant)

Lancaster County, Judge John Colborn

Attorneys: Jennifer Gaughan (Legal Aid of Nebraska for Appellant) --- Marcee A. Brownlee (Assistant City Attorney) --- Christopher Eickholt (ACLU of Nebraska, Amicus Curiae) --- Ryan P. Sullivan (Civil Clinical Law Program, University of Nebraska College of Law, Amicus Curiae)

Criminal: Motion to seal criminal record

Proceedings below: The county court overruled Appellant’s motion to seal. The district court affirmed.

Issues: 1. The District Court erred in affirming the county court’s determination that the remedy provided in Neb. Rev. Stat. § 29-3523 is not available to legally innocent Nebraskans whose charges were dismissed before the operative date of the amendment.

a. A plain reading of Section 29-3523 does not limit cases eligible to be sealed to those dismissed on or after January 1, 2017.

b. Interpreting the operative date as plainly precluding Section 29-3523 from applying to cases dismissed before 2017 would lead to an absurd result because it would frustrate the legislative intent behind the statutory amendments.

c. If Section 29-3523 is ambiguous, the legislative history shows the intent of the legislature was to expand privacy protections regardless of the date the case was dismissed.

d. Neb. Rev. Stat. § 29-3523's operative date alone does not support its inapplicability to cases dismissed before 2017.

e. Appellant is not seeking retroactive application of Section 29-3523.

2. The District Court erred in determining Appellant is not eligible to seal her records under the

2007 version of Section 29-3523.

Schedule Code
SC