Savage v. IdahoAnnotate this Case
This appeal stems from a criminal defense attorney’s failure to adequately advise his client about the client’s constitutional rights against self-incrimination during a related civil deposition. Melvin Savage was convicted of first-degree arson and misdemeanor stalking. He filed a petition for post-conviction relief claiming that his trial counsel failed to adequately advise him about his rights under the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and Article I Section 13 of the Idaho Constitution during a deposition in the civil case initiated by the victims of the arson. The district court granted the State’s motion for summary dismissal of the post-conviction petition. Savage then filed a pro se motion for relief from judgment under Idaho Rule of Civil Procedure 60(b) which was not considered. Savage then timely appealed the district court’s grant of summary dismissal and its order refusing to consider his Rule 60(b) motion. The Idaho Supreme Court determined the district court erred in summarily dismissing Savage’s petition for post-conviction relief because Savage raised a genuine issue of material fact regarding his counsel’s deficient performance. Therefore, the Court reversed the district court’s decision granting the State’s motion for summary dismissal.