Skip to Main Nav Skip to Main Content Skip to Footer Content

Oral Argument Before the Hawaii Supreme Court

Amended 08/01/13)

No. SCWC-11-0000374 Thursday, September 19, 2013, 11:15 a.m.

STATE OF HAWAI`I, Respondent/Plaintiff-Appellee, vs. JOHN N. AMIRAL, Petitioner/Defendant-Appellant.

The above-captioned case has been set for argument on the merits at:

Supreme Court Courtroom
Ali`iolani Hale, 2nd Floor
417 South King Street
Honolulu, HI 96813

Attorney for Petitioner/Defendant-Appellant:

Kevin O’Grady

Attorney for Respondent/Plaintiff-Appellee:

Brian R. Vincent, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney

NOTE: Order accepting Application for Writ of Certiorari, filed 07/15/13.

NOTE: Order granting motion to continue oral argument from 08/22/13 to 09/19/13 at 11:15 a.m., filed 08/01/13.


 [ Listen to the entire audio recording in mp3 format ]

Brief Description:

Petitioner/defendant-appellant John N. Amiral (Amiral) timely filed an application for a writ of certiorari seeking review of the May 31, 2013 judgment of the Intermediate Court of Appeal (ICA) filed pursuant to its April 30, 2013 summary disposition order. On April 12, 2010, the District Court of the First Circuit, `Ewa Division (district court) entered its Notice of Entry of Judgment and/or Order and Plea/Judgment (judgment), finding that Amiral committed the offense of exceeding the speed limit. Amiral appealed the district court’s judgment to the ICA, arguing that the district court erroneously admitted the speed reading from the officer’s laser gun into evidence. The ICA’s majority opinion rejected this argument and affirmed the district court’s judgment.

In his application to this court, Amiral presents the following question: “Did the [ICA] err when it ruled that the [district] court did not err when it found that sufficient foundation had been laid for the laser gun reading?” Amiral maintains that the State of Hawai`i (State) failed to establish a sufficient foundation to admit the speed reading. Amiral contends that the State did not produce evidence that the laser gun was working properly because (1) there was no evidence that the laser gun was calibrated, (2) the officer lacked personal knowledge that the tests he performed on his laser gun were recommended by the manufacturer or how the tests worked, and (3) the officer relied on the instructions he received during his training and his reading of the manual. Amiral also argues that the State failed to produce evidence that the officer was qualified to operate the laser gun, as there was no evidence that his training met the requirements of the manufacturer of the laser gun. The State did not file a response to the application for writ of certiorari.