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Oral Argument Before the Hawaii Supreme Court-No. SCWC-16-0000810

No. SCWC-16-0000810, Thursday, May 16, 2019, 11:15 a.m.

STATE OF HAWAI I, Respondent/Plaintiff-Appellee, vs. MARK MEANS, also known as MARK EDWARD MEANS, Petitioner/Defendant-Appellant.

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

Supreme Court Courtroom
Aliiolani Hale, 2nd Floor
417 South King Street
Honolulu, HI 96813

Attorney for Petitioner:

Randall K. Hironaka of Miyoshi & Hironaka, LLLC

Attorney for Respondent:

Peter A. Hanano, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney

NOTE: Order accepting Application for Writ of Certiorari, filed 03/27/19.

COURT: Recktenwald, C.J., Nakayama, McKenna, Pollack, and Wilson, JJ.

[ Listen to the entire audio recording in mp3 format ]

Brief Description:

Mark Means was convicted in the Circuit Court of the Second Circuit of Theft in the Second Degree by Shoplifting. The State alleged that he stole three items with an aggregate value exceeding $300 from a store on Maui. Means was found guilty as charged by the jury and sentenced to a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment under a repeat offender statute on the basis of three previous felony convictions he had incurred in the State of Florida. The Intermediate Court of Appeals (“ICA”) affirmed Means’ conviction, and the supreme court granted his application for a writ of certiorari. On appeal, Means challenges his conviction on three grounds.

First, Means argues that he was denied his constitutional right to the effective assistance of counsel because his trial counsel adduced testimony that he was homeless and unemployed at the time of the theft. Means argues that this testimony was prejudicial and did not support his defense, which was that he took the items without knowledge of their value.

Second, Means argues that the circuit court improperly admitted two pieces of evidence: testimony from the store’s asset protection manager regarding the value of the three stolen items and a receipt produced on the day of the theft that indicated the value of the items.

Third, Means argues that his constitutional due process rights were violated because the State applied the repeat offender statute to him without including the predicate prior offenses in his charging document or having a jury make a factual finding about the prior offenses. Means argues that State v. Auld, 136 Hawai i 244, 361 P.3d 471 (2015), which added new requirements regarding predicate prior convictions and which was decided during Means’ trial, applies to his case.