In re Reymundo

CourtCourt of Appeals of Arizona
Citation177 P.3d 330,217 Ariz. 588
Docket NumberNo. 2 CA-JV 2007-0036.,2 CA-JV 2007-0036.
PartiesIn re REYMUNDO F.
Decision Date27 February 2008
177 P.3d 330
217 Ariz. 588
No. 2 CA-JV 2007-0036.
Court of Appeals of Arizona, Division 2, Department A.
February 27, 2008.

[177 P.3d 331]

James P. Walsh, Pinal County Attorney By Susan Crawford, Florence, Attorneys for State.

Mary Wisdom, Pinal County Public Defender By Teri L. Shaw, Florence, Attorneys for Minor.


HOWARD, Presiding Judge.

¶ 1 Appellant Reymundo F. appeals from the juvenile court's order dismissing the delinquency petition against him without prejudice. He contends that Rule 28(C)(7)(a), Ariz. R.P. Juv. Ct., required the juvenile court to accept his voluntary admission to the delinquency petition at the advisory hearing, thereby precluding the court from dismissing the petition without prejudice so the state could file adult criminal charges against him. Because the rule did not require the court to immediately accept his plea, we affirm.

¶ 2 Reymundo was born in May 1989. Four days before his eighteenth birthday, the state filed a delinquency petition charging him with three offenses committed the previous day: threatening or intimidating and disorderly conduct, both misdemeanors; and possession of a semiautomatic rifle as a prohibited possessor, a class four felony. At the advisory hearing required by Rule 28, Reymundo admitted all three charges. The juvenile court found a factual basis existed for the admissions and found them to be knowing and voluntary, but it deferred acceptance of Reymundo's plea until disposition. Two days later, the state moved to dismiss the delinquency petition so it could instead prosecute Reymundo as an adult. The court granted the motion, and Reymundo appeals from its order dismissing the delinquency petition without prejudice.

¶ 3 Preliminarily, in its three-paragraph answering brief citing neither the record nor any legal authority, the state asserts that Reymundo lacks "standing" to appeal because the offenses alleged in the dismissed delinquency petition have not been reified against him in juvenile court. Instead, the state reports, Reymundo has been charged as an adult with other, "much more serious offenses" now pending in adult criminal court. The state asks us to "decline jurisdiction" of this appeal. We do not address

177 P.3d 332

these unsupported assertions.1 See former Ariz. R.P. Juv. Ct. 91(A) (renumbered as Rule 106(A), eff. Jan. 1, 2008); Ariz. R. Civ.App. P. 13(a)(6); In re 1996 Nissan Sentra, 201 Ariz. 114, ¶ 15, 32 P.3d 39, 43-44 (App.2001) (court will not address unsupported argument).

¶ 4 Reymundo contends the juvenile court abused its discretion by dismissing the petition without prejudice because Rule 28(C)(7)(a) required the court to accept his plea at the advisory hearing and therefore he was effectively adjudicated delinquent upon making his admissions. He then reasons that the state's motion to dismiss under A.R.S. § 8-302 was untimely because he had already been adjudicated delinquent. He further claims that Rule 28(E) provides additional support for his position.

¶ 5 Issues concerning the proper interpretation of statutes and rules are questions of law, which we review de novo. See Adrian E. v. Ariz. Dep't of Econ. Sec., 215 Ariz. 96, ¶ 9, 158 P.3d 225, 228 (App.2007); In re John M., 201 Ariz. 424, ¶ 7, 36 P.3d 772, 774 (App. 2001). We apply the same principles used in interpreting statutes when we interpret rules, and we attempt to harmonize the two. State v. Hansen, 215 Ariz. 287, ¶ 7, 160 P.3d 166, 168 (2007). "[E]ven when statutory language, read in isolation, might be susceptible to a particular construction, we employ a common sense approach, interpreting the statute `by reference to its stated purpose and ... the system of related statutes of which it forms a part.'" State v. Rodriguez, 205 Ariz. 392, ¶ 11, 71 P.3d 919, 923 (App. 2003), quoting Goddard v. Superior Court, 191 Ariz. 402, ¶ 8, 956 P.2d 529, 531 (App. 1998) (alteration in Rodriguez); see also State ex rel. Larson v. Farley, 106 Ariz. 119, 122, 471 P.2d 731, 734 (1970).

¶ 6 Rule 28(C)(7)(a) provides in pertinent part that the juvenile court at an advisory hearing shall "[d]etermine whether the juvenile wishes to admit or deny the allegations" and, "[i]f the juvenile wishes to admit to allegations, the court shall accept the admission or plea if supported by a factual basis and a finding that the juvenile knowingly, intelligently and voluntarily waives the rights enumerated [in Rule 28(C)(1) through (4)]." (Emphasis added.) This language could be read in isolation to support Reymundo's position. But we must interpret it in the context of related rules and statutes. See Rodriguez, 205 Ariz. 392, ¶ 11, 71 P.3d at 923.

¶ 7 Rule 28(E), entitled "Disposition," provides:

Following an admission, the court shall adjudicate the juvenile delinquent...

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