North Dakota v. RichterAnnotate this Case
Tyler Richter appealed a criminal judgment entered after he pled guilty to the charge of luring minors by computers, and conditionally pled guilty to the charge of attempted promotion of obscenity to minors. Richter reserved the right to appeal the district court’s denial of his motion to dismiss the charge of attempted promotion of obscenity to minors. He argued attempted promotion of obscenity to minors was not a cognizable offense. Specifically, Richter argued there was an inconsistency in the elements of the criminal attempt and promotion of obscenity to minors offenses which was impossible to rectify. He claimed attempt required the actor have an intent to complete the commission of the underlying crime, promoting obscenity only requires the actor to act recklessly which did not require an intent to commit a particular objective, and a person cannot intend to commit an offense that can be committed without any intent. The State opposed Richter’s motion. After review, the North Dakota Supreme Court concurred that the attempted promotion of obscenity to minors was not a cognizable offense, and the district court erred in denying Richter's motion to dismiss. Judgment convicting Richter of attempted promotion of obscenity to minors was reversed, and the matter remanded to allow Richter to withdraw his guilty plea to the attempt offense and dismiss the attempt charge.