Areas of Law: Constitutional Law, Criminal Law
Opinion Date: August 15, 2012
Defendant-Appellant James Mathurin was convicted of a number of armed robbery and weapons charges. These convictions resulted from a five-month-long crime spree in Miami-Dade County that took place when Defendant was seventeen-years-old. On appeal, Defendant challenged his convictions on a number of grounds, one of which is that the government violated his rights under the Speedy Trial Act. The narrow question on appeal before the Eleventh Circuit was whether the time during which plea negotiations are conducted is automatically excludable from the Speedy Trial Act’s thirty-day window for filing an information or indictment. After review, the Court concluded that the time during which plea negotiations are conducted are not automatically excludable. Therefore, the Court reversed the District Court’s denial of Defendant's motion to dismiss, vacated his convictions, and remanded the case to the District Court with instructions to determine whether dismissal of the charges should be with or without prejudice.