Schumacher v. State, A-13641

CourtCourt of Appeals of Alaska
Writing for the CourtALLARD JUDGE.
PartiesAPRIL M. SCHUMACHER, Appellant, v. STATE OF ALASKA, Appellee.
Docket NumberA-13641
Decision Date29 June 2022

APRIL M. SCHUMACHER, Appellant,
v.

STATE OF ALASKA, Appellee.

No. A-13641

Court of Appeals of Alaska

June 29, 2022


UNPUBLISHED See Alaska Appellate Rule 214(d)

Appeal from the Superior Court, Fourth Judicial District, Fairbanks, Earl A. Peterson, Judge Trial Court No. 4FA-19-00338 CR.

Barbara Dunham, Attorney at Law, under contract with the Public Defender Agency, and Samantha Cherot, Public Defender, Anchorage, for the Appellant.

Madison M. Mitchell, Assistant Attorney General, Office of Criminal Appeals, Anchorage, and Treg R. Taylor, Attorney General, Juneau, for the Appellee.

Before: Allard, Chief Judge, and Harbison and Terrell, Judges.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

ALLARD JUDGE.

April M. Schumacher was charged with multiple counts of third-degree assault and one count of resisting arrest following an incident at her home in which she

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mistook two judicial services officers for prowlers.[1] (The officers were there to serve a civil summons.)

After the State presented its evidence at trial, Schumacher moved for a judgment of acquittal on the assault and resisting arrest charges. The trial court denied this motion. The jury subsequently acquitted Schumacher of the assault charges but convicted her of the resisting arrest charge. Schumacher now appeals, arguing that there was insufficient evidence presented at trial to support her conviction for resisting arrest and that the trial court erred when it denied her judgment of acquittal on that charge.

On appeal, the State concedes that there was insufficient evidence and that the motion for judgment of acquittal on the resisting arrest charge should have been granted. When the State concedes error in a criminal case, this Court has an independent duty to evaluate whether the State's concession is well-founded.[2]

We have reviewed the record in this case and we agree that the State's concession is well-founded. A person is guilty of resisting arrest under AS 11.56.700(a)(1) if, "knowing that a peace officer is making an arrest," and "with the intent of preventing the officer from making the arrest, the person resists personal arrest . . . by force." As we have repeatedly held, "mere non-submission" is insufficient to prove resisting arrest.[3] Therefore, a person who passively resists the arrest or fails to

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cooperate in being handcuffed is not guilty of resisting arrest.[4] Instead, there must be proof that the person used force and that the force was directed...

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