Vermont v. KingAnnotate this Case
The superior court certified a question of law for the Vermont Supreme Court’s review in connection with the prosecution of defendant Geoffrey King. Specifically, the court and parties asked the Supreme Court to determine what legal standard the superior court should apply to determine whether the State’s approximately three-year delay in bringing charges against defendant violated defendant’s due process rights under the U.S. and Vermont Constitutions. Defendant was accused of sexual assault. The Supreme Court concluded that, to establish the State’s pre-accusation delay violated a defendant’s due process rights under either the U.S. Constitution or the Vermont Constitution, the defendant had to demonstrate actual substantial prejudice and prosecutorial misconduct intended to gain a tactical advantage or to advance some other impermissible purpose that violates fundamental conceptions of justice. Because defendant failed to meet either prong of this standard, the Court affirmed the superior court’s denial of his motion to dismiss.