The Colville Tribal Court of Appeals will hear arguments at Gonzaga University School of Law’s Barbieri Courtroom, at 10 a.m., Friday, Jan. 25.
The hearing, which is open to the public, is part of Gonzaga Law School’s centennial celebration. The panel will ask if the lower tribal court abused the power of discretion in blocking further prosecution of a dismissed case.
The law school is located at 721 N Cincinnati St., in Spokane.
The case being heard, Colville Confederated Tribes v. G. Stensgar / C. Signor (case no. AP12-007/008) addresses an issue of the discretionary power of a judge when a complaint is not filed within 72 hours of an arrest.
In two separate cases, defendants were arrested, cited, and appeared in court as they promised when posting bail. The prosecutor, who did not receive documents from the jail, was not prepared to proceed. The judge dismissed the case “with prejudice,” which means the prosecutor would not be allowed to prosecute the defendants for those crimes at a later date. The prosecutor’s office appealed the decision, arguing it was an abuse of the court’s discretionary power.
All three of the justices presiding in the case are Gonzaga Law School alumni.
“The chance to see the highest court of the Colville Confederated Tribes in action is a unique one for both our students and the community,” said Gonzaga Law School Dean Jane Korn.