HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

125

THIRTY-SECOND LEGISLATURE, 2023

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

RELATING TO CRIMINAL PROCEDURE.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. Chapter 801, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"801- Presence of the defendant. (a) A defendant shall be present either physically or by video conference at the arraignment, at the time of entering a plea, at pretrial evidentiary hearings, at every stage of the trial including the impaneling of the jury and the return of the verdict, and at the imposition of sentence; provided that the defendant need not be present and shall be considered to have waived the right to be present if:

(1) The defendant is a corporation and appears by counsel;

(2) The proceeding is a conference or argument involving a question of law;

(3) The proceeding involves a potential reduction of sentence;

(4) The defendant consents in writing to the proceeding being conducted in the defendant's absence;

(5) The defendant's counsel orally represents that the defendant consents to the proceeding being conducted in the defendant's absence; or

(6) The defendant is voluntarily absent from two consecutive court appearances and:

(A) The defendant's counsel notified the defendant of the purpose of the proceeding; and

(B) If the proceeding is an arraignment, the defendant was provided a copy of the charging document.

(b) The further progress of a pretrial evidentiary hearing or of the trial, to and including the return of the verdict, shall not be prevented and the defendant shall be considered to have waived the right to be present if a defendant who was initially present:

(1) Is voluntarily absent after the hearing or trial has commenced, whether or not the defendant has been informed by the court of the obligation to remain during the trial; or

(2) Engages in conduct that justifies the defendant's exclusion from the courtroom.

(c) The court may conduct by video conference:

(1) Without the consent of the defendant, an arraignment in which the court accepts a plea of not guilty;

(2) With the oral or written consent of the defendant:

(A) An arraignment in which the court accepts, or takes under advisement, a plea of guilty or no contest;

(B) A pretrial evidentiary or non-evidentiary proceeding; or

(C) A post-conviction evidentiary or non-evidentiary proceeding, other than a sentencing hearing; or

(3) With the oral or written consent of both the prosecution and the defendant, a sentencing hearing in which a sentence is imposed."

SECTION 2. This Act does not affect rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun before its effective date.

SECTION 3. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 4. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

 

INTRODUCED BY:

_____________________________

 

By Request


 


 

Report Title:

Honolulu Prosecuting Attorney Package; Criminal Procedure; Defendant's Presence

 

Description:

Adds a new section to Chapter 801, Hawaii Revised Statutes, establishing circumstances in which the presence of a defendant is required for court proceedings or may be waived.

 

 

 

The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.