State v. Brannon

Decision Date08 April 1980
Docket NumberNo. 59553,59553
Citation154 Ga.App. 285,267 S.E.2d 888
PartiesThe STATE v. BRANNON.
CourtGeorgia Court of Appeals

F. Larry Salmon, Dist. Atty., William H. Boggs, Asst. Dist. Atty., for appellant.

Thomas B. Murphy, Bremen, for appellee.

SHULMAN, Judge.

Pursuant to Code Ann. § 6-1001a(a), the state appeals the grant of defendant's plea in bar, contending that the trial court improperly determined that the statute of limitation had run on the crime charged against the defendant (the misdemeanor issuance of a bad check) prior to the time the special presentment was filed against defendant. We cannot agree with the state's assertions of error; accordingly, the judgment of the trial court is affirmed.

"A person commits criminal issuance of a bad check when he makes, draws, utters, or delivers a check, draft, or order for the payment of money on any bank or other depository in exchange for a present consideration or wages, knowing that it will not be honored by the drawee." Code Ann. § 26-1704(a).

Defendant allegedly delivered a bad check to one J. B. Copeland (d/b/a Quality Marine) on March 26, 1977. If defendant knew at the time he delivered such check that it would not be honored by the drawee, then he would have committed the crime of issuing a bad check. Since, under the facts of this case, the issuance of the bad check would have constituted a misdemeanor, it was incumbent upon the state to file an accusation or obtain a presentment against defendant within two years of the commission of the alleged offense. See Code Ann. §§ 26-502(d) and 27-601(4).

However, since the statute of limitation is tolled "so long as the offense or offender is unknown" (Code Ann. § 27-601(4)), the trial court found in the case at bar that the statute did not begin to run until May of 1977, at which time Copeland, the victim of the alleged crime, knew of the offense and the offender. Based on Copeland's knowledge in May, 1977, the court determined that the special presentment obtained against defendant on September 11, 1979, more than two years after Copeland had knowledge of the offense and the offender, was not timely filed and that the statute of limitations had therefore run on the crime charged.

1. The state argues that the trial court erred in so ruling, in that the statute did not begin to run until after September 13, 1977, ten days after Copeland had sent notice to defendant that payment on his check was refused, which notice brought the offense within the statute.

As stated above, the crime of issuing a bad check occurs at the time the check is issued if it is made or issued with the knowledge that it will not be honored. Contrary to appellant's assertions, notice of the drawee's refusal to pay, followed by ten days for the defendant to pay the check (upon notice of its dishonor), is not an element of the offense of issuing a bad check. The provisions in Code Ann. § 26-1704(a) relating to notice to the defendant and his subsequent failure to pay the amount due are evidentiary matters and are not prerequisites to the commission of or conviction of the offense of issuing a bad check. See, e. g., Wiggins v. State, 139 Ga.App. 98(1), 227 S.E.2d 895.

The statute itself clearly states that the failure to pay within ten days of notice is merely indicative of an accused's culpability, prima facie evidence of his knowledge at the time of making the check that it would not be honored. See in this regard Hall v. State, 244 Ga. 86, 259 S.E.2d 41.

2. A. The key to determining when the statute of limitation begins to run is to find when the offender or offense became known. See Taylor v. State, 44 Ga.App. 64(2(1)), 160 S.E. 667; and Code Ann. § 27-601(4). It may be that in certain factual situations the statute would not begin to run on the crime of issuing a bad check until after the defendant fails to pay the amount owing on his bad check after receiving ten days notice of the drawee's refusal to pay, but that would be so only if it was found that it was not until that date that the offense or offender were known. We are not presented with that situation in the case at bar. In the instant case, the trial court found as a fact that Copeland knew of the offense and the person who committed the offense in May of 1977, more than two years prior to the time the special...

To continue reading

Request your trial
19 cases
  • People v. Kronemyer
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals Court of Appeals
    • February 11, 1987
    ...trigger a statute of limitations in Georgia. 8 However, the phrase as applied to the facts of the cases referred to (State v. Brannon (1980) 154 Ga.App. 285, 267 S.E.2d 888, and Taylor v. State (1931) 44 Ga.App. 64, 160 S.E. 667) each involved persons who were either direct victims or membe......
  • Sears v. State, 73349
    • United States
    • Georgia Court of Appeals
    • March 17, 1987
    ...when the statute of limitation begins to run is to find when the offender or offense became known. [Cits.]" State v. Brannon, 154 Ga.App. 285, 286-87, 267 S.E.2d 888 (1980). The State bears the burden of proof in this regard. See State v. Lester, 170 Ga.App. 471, 317 S.E.2d 295 (1984); Stat......
  • Smith v. Deering
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Southern District of Georgia
    • December 20, 1994
    ...does not begin to run until an offense is known to the prosecutor or to someone interested in the prosecution. State v. Brannon, 154 Ga.App. 285, 267 S.E.2d 888 (1980). In the indictment, Defendants state that Smith's failure to collect the fi. fas. was "unknown until and after April 1, 199......
  • Adams v. State, A97A2326.
    • United States
    • Georgia Court of Appeals
    • March 17, 1998
    ...of the offenses, the trial court did not err in overruling Adams' demurrer on the grounds asserted. See id.; State v. Brannon, 154 Ga. App. 285(2), 267 S.E.2d 888 (1980). 4. Adams asserts that his due process rights were violated because the State moved for a severance without notice to him......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
6 books & journal articles
  • C1 Limitations of Prosecution
    • United States
    • State Bar of Georgia Georgia Benchbook 2017 edition
    • Invalid date
    ...begin to run until the offense or offender becomes known (to either victim (but for minors see B(5) below) or authorities). [Brannon, 154 Ga. App. 285, 267 SE2d 888 (1980); Womack, 260 Ga. 21, 389 SE2d 240 (1990) (victim knows)]; • Runs where victim knows despite fear of retaliation [Lee, 2......
  • C1 Limitations of Prosecutions
    • United States
    • State Bar of Georgia Georgia Benchbook 2023 edition
    • Invalid date
    ...begin to run until the offense or offender becomes known (to either victim (but for minors see B(5) below) or authorities). [Brannon, 154 Ga. App. 285, 267 SE2d 888 (1980); Womack, 260 Ga. 21, 389 SE2d 240 (1990) (victim knows)]; • Runs where victim knows despite fear of retaliation [Lee, 2......
  • C1 Limitations of Prosecution:
    • United States
    • State Bar of Georgia Georgia Benchbook 2015 edition
    • Invalid date
    ...begin to run until the offense or offender becomes known (to either victim (but for minors see B(5) below) or authorities). [Brannon, 154 Ga. App. 285, 267 SE2d 888 (1980); Womack, 260 Ga. 21, 389 SE2d 240 (1990) (victim knows)]; • Runs where victim knows despite fear of retaliation [Lee, 2......
  • C1 Limitations of Prosecution
    • United States
    • State Bar of Georgia Georgia Benchbook 2018 edition
    • Invalid date
    ...begin to run until the offense or offender becomes known (to either victim (but for minors see B(5) below) or authorities). [Brannon, 154 Ga. App. 285, 267 SE2d 888 (1980); Womack, 260 Ga. 21, 389 SE2d 240 (1990) (victim knows)]; • Runs where victim knows despite fear of retaliation [Lee, 2......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT