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State v. Richardson

Intermediate Court of Appeals of Hawai'i

January 30, 2015

STATE OF HAWAI'I, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
ANTHONY RICHARDSON, Defendant-Appellant

Editorial Note:

This decision is published in table format in the Pacific and Hawai'i reporter.

APPEAL FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE FIRST CIRCUIT. (CR. NO. 11-1-1004).

On the briefs: Randall K. Hironaka (Miyoshi & Hironaka), for Defendant-Appellant.

Donn Fudo, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney, City and County of Honolulu, for Plaintiff-Appellee.

By: Nakamura, C.J., Leonard and Ginoza, JJ.

SUMMARY DISPOSITION ORDER

Defendant-Appellant Anthony Richardson (Richardson) appeals from the Judgment of Conviction and Sentence filed on October 30, 2013 in the Circuit Court of the First Circuit (circuit court).[1] A jury convicted Richardson of one count of Burglary in the First Degree in violation of Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS) § 708-810(1)(c) (2014).[2] The charge stemmed from an incident in which Richardson entered a house through an open window and disabled the alarm system while the residents of the house were away on vacation.

The circuit court denied Richardson's motions for judgment of acquittal and sentenced him to ten years of imprisonment.

On appeal, Richardson argues that the circuit court erred by: (1) denying his motions for judgment of acquittal based upon HRS § 708-812.5 (2014) because the statute is unconstitutionally vague when read in conjunction with the burglary statute; and (2) denying his motions for judgment of acquittal by finding that State v. Hanohano, 130 Hawai'i 346, 310 P.3d 1047, 2010 WL 5146282 (App. 2010) (mem.) did not apply to the instant case.

Upon careful review of the record and the briefs submitted by the parties and having given due consideration to the arguments advanced and the issues raised by the parties, as well as the relevant statutory and case law, we resolve Richardson's points of error as follows and affirm.

Richardson argues that HRS § 708-812.5, which the legislature enacted in 2006 as part of a comprehensive revision of the Hawai'i Penal Code, should be invalidated. The statute reads: " A person engages in conduct 'with intent to commit therein a crime against a person or against property rights' if the person formed the intent to commit within the building a crime against a person or property rights before, during, or after unlawful entry into the building." (Emphasis added.)

Claims that a criminal statute is unconstitutionally vague are subject to the following standard:

Due process of law requires that a penal statute state with reasonable clarity the act it proscribes and provide fixed standards for adjudging guilt, or the statute is void for vagueness. Statutes must give the person of ordinary intelligence a reasonable opportunity to know what conduct is prohibited so that he or she may choose between lawful and unlawful conduct.

State v. Kapela, 82 Hawai'i 381, 392, 922 P.2d 994, 1005 (App. 1996) (citation and block quote format omitted). In our view, HRS § 708-812.5, in conjunction with HRS § 708-810(1)(c), provides ...


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