FROM THE CRAIGHEAD COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, EASTERN DISTRICT
[NO. 16CR-17-12] HONORABLE JOHN N. FOGLEMAN, JUDGE
Law Firm, P.A., by: Martin E. Lilly, for appellant.
Rutledge, Att'y Gen., by: Vada Berger, Ass't
Att'y Gen., for appellee.
KENNETH S. HIXSON, Judge
Latasha Kay Schoolfield brings this interlocutory appeal
after the Craighead County Circuit Court, Eastern District
(Eastern District), denied her motion to dismiss. In summary,
appellant was tried and acquitted on one count of rape filed
in the Craighead County Circuit Court, Western District
(Western District). After the acquittal, appellant was
charged in the Eastern District with several counts of raping
the same victim. Appellant filed a motion to dismiss
generally contending that new rape charges were barred
because they were required to be tried together under Rule
21.3 of the Arkansas Rules of Criminal Procedure. The circuit
court denied the motion to dismiss.
appeal, appellant makes two arguments. First, she argues that
the circuit court erred in denying her motion to dismiss
because the charges filed in the second prosecution in the
Eastern District are for "the same offense and the same
'continuing course of conduct'" in violation of
her right to be free from double jeopardy under the Fifth
Amendment to the United States Constitution. Second, she
argues that the second prosecution is barred because the
Eastern District charges are "related charges" and
were required to be tried together with the Western District
charge pursuant to Rule 21.3 of the Arkansas Rules of
Criminal Procedure. We affirm.
was initially charged with one count of rape in case No.
16JCR-16-956 in the Western District. The information
specifically alleged that on or about August 30, 2016,
appellant engaged in sexual intercourse or deviate sexual
activity with another person who is less than fourteen years
old constituting the offense of rape, a Class Y felony, in
violation of Arkansas Code Annotated section 5-14-103 (Repl.
2013). This offense allegedly occurred at a Motel 6 in
Jonesboro, Arkansas; hence, jurisdiction and venue were
proper in the Western District. During the jury trial held in
February 2017 in the Western District, in addition to
presenting evidence of the rape that allegedly occurred at
the Motel 6 in Jonesboro, the State elicited testimony that
appellant had sexual intercourse three or four times after
August 30, 2016, with the same victim at the victim's
home in Caraway, Arkansas. Ultimately, the jury acquitted
appellant of the rape that was alleged to have occurred at
the Motel 6 in Jonesboro.
on April 3, 2017, the State charged appellant with four
separate counts of rape in case No. 16LCR-17-12 in the
Eastern District. It was alleged that between August 31 and
September 15, 2016, appellant engaged in sexual intercourse
or deviate sexual activity with another person who is less
than fourteen years old constituting the offense of rape, a
Class Y felony, in violation of Arkansas Code Annotated
section 5-14-103. These charges stemmed from the allegations
that appellant had engaged in sexual intercourse on multiple
occasions with the victim at the victim's home in
Caraway, Arkansas, which is located in the Eastern District.
August 10, 2017, appellant filed a motion to dismiss the
information in the Eastern District. She argued that her
"motion to dismiss for failure to join all related
charges should be granted because [she] already was put in
jeopardy on all charges in the February 2017 [Western
District] trial, and to deny this motion would allow the
State to manipulate the system and get another bite at the
apple in violation of due process." The State disagreed
and responded, and the circuit court denied appellant's
motion to dismiss. This interlocutory appeal followed.
appellate courts have long recognized the right to an
immediate interlocutory appeal from the denial of a motion to
dismiss on double-jeopardy grounds. Green v. State,
2011 Ark. 92, 380 S.W.3d 368; McClendon v. State,
2017 Ark.App. 295, 523 S.W.3d 374. We review a circuit
court's denial of a motion to dismiss on double-jeopardy
grounds de novo on appeal. Cox v. State, 2012
Ark.App. 499, 423 S.W.3d 131. When the analysis presents
itself as a mixed question of law and fact, the factual
determinations made by the circuit court are given due
deference and are not reversed unless clearly erroneous.
Id. However, the ultimate decision by the circuit
court that the defendant's protection against double
jeopardy was not violated is reviewed de novo with no
deference given to the circuit court's determination.
Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution requires
that no person be twice put in jeopardy of life or liberty
for the same offense. The Double Jeopardy Clause protects
criminal defendants from (1) a second prosecution for the
same offense after acquittal, (2) a second prosecution for
the same offense after conviction, and (3) multiple
punishments for the same offense. Green, 2011 Ark.
92, 380 S.W.3d 368. Appellant first argues on appeal that the
circuit court erred in denying her motion to dismiss because
the charges filed in the second prosecution in the Eastern
District are for the same offense and the same continuing
course of conduct in violation of her right to be free from
double jeopardy under the Fifth Amendment to the United
States Constitution. However, appellant is mistaken.
supreme court has made it clear that rape is not a continuing
offense, in that each act occurring as the result of a
separate impulse constitutes a separate offense. Ricks v.
State, 327 Ark. 513, 940 S.W.2d 422 (1997); see also
Bean v. State, 2012 Ark.App. 643. Here, although the
victim is the same, the alleged rape in the Western District
occurred on August 30, 2016, in the Motel 6 in Jonesboro. The
alleged rapes in the Eastern District occurred between August
31 and September 15, 2016, at the victim's residence in
Caraway, Arkansas. Therefore, because each charge was the
result of a separate impulse separated in point of time, the
charges were not for the same continuing offense, and
appellant was properly charged with separate offenses.