CHRISTOPHER M. REQUEJO, Appellant (Defendant),
THE STATE OF WYOMING, Appellee (Plaintiff).
from the District Court of Goshen County The Honorable
Patrick W. Korell, Judge
Representing Appellant: Diane Lozano, State Public Defender;
Kirk A. Morgan, Chief Appellate Counsel; David E. Westling,
Senior Assistant Appellate Counsel. Argument by Mr. Westling.
Representing Appellee: Peter K. Michael, Wyoming Attorney
General; Christyne M. Martens, Deputy Attorney General;
Caitlin F. Harper, Senior Assistant Attorney General; Darrell
Duane Jackson, Faculty Director, PAP; Catherine M. Mercer,
Student Director, PAP; Jenna N. Niehl, Student Intern.
Argument by Ms. Niehl.
DAVIS, C.J., and FOX, KAUTZ, BOOMGAARDEN and GRAY, JJ.
A jury convicted Christopher Michael Requejo of two counts of
aggravated assault and battery with a deadly weapon. Four and
one-half months before his trial, Mr. Requejo demanded
disclosure by the State of any recorded statements he or any
witnesses had made. Although the State had access to such
statements before Mr. Requejo's demand, it did not
disclose them until three working days prior to trial. Mr.
Requejo moved for dismissal of the charges as a sanction for
the late discovery and now appeals the district court's
denial of that motion. We find that the district court
properly exercised its discretion by imposing other sanctions
against the State and affirm the court's order denying
Mr. Requejo's motion to dismiss.
Mr. Requejo presents the following issue on appeal:
the district court abused its discretion in not dismissing
with prejudice the charges against Mr. Requejo as a sanction
for the State's violation of Wyoming Rule of Criminal
On July 20, 2017, the State charged Mr. Requejo with two
counts of aggravated assault and battery with a deadly weapon
in violation of Wyo. Stat. Ann. § 6-2-502(a)(ii) and (b)
(Lexis Nexis 2017). The charges stemmed from an incident
where he attempted to forcibly enter the residence of his
girlfriend's sister while swinging a machete at a window
and yelling threats at the two occupants inside. Mr. Requejo
pleaded not guilty at his arraignment on August 10, 2017, and
the case was set for trial. On September 11, 2017, he served
discovery demands on the State. Under W.R.Cr.P. 16, he
demanded, among other discovery, any recorded statements he
had made. Under W.R.Cr.P. 26.2 he requested "any and all
statements which Rule 26.2 required be turned over." The
district court did not enter an order requiring any
While the State timely responded to most of Mr. Requejo's
discovery requests, it failed to produce two items until
January 24, 2018-three working days, or five days total
before trial. These items were a recording of a 911 call made
by the victim on the night of the incident and a statement
made by Mr. Requejo to the police on the night of his arrest.
Based on the late disclosure, Mr. Requejo filed a Motion
to Dismiss Case with Prejudice on January 25, 2018.
The district court held a hearing on the motion on January
29, 2018. The State denied any bad faith and asserted a lack
of diligence and a glitch in their records acquisition
process as the reason for the late disclosure. This glitch
kept the State from discovering the records until several
days before trial, after which they promptly disclosed them
to Mr. Requejo. Acknowledging their violation of discovery
rules, the State voluntarily stipulated to suppression of the
late disclosed evidence and listed several remedial
mechanisms it had implemented to avoid any future mistakes.
It argued this stipulation materially weakened its case since
the evidence in question was only inculpatory and thus
damaging to Mr. Requejo's case, not helpful. Mr. Requejo
agreed the State probably did not act in bad faith but stated
that the late disclosure should not have occurred in any
event. In addition, he argued that the late disclosure caused
him to suffer prejudice due to its effect on plea
negotiations and his inability to pursue a voluntary
intoxication defense. The court offered Mr. Requejo a
one-week continuance to consider a voluntary intoxication
defense based on the late discovery materials, but he
declined this offer. He declined two further offers of
continuances made by the judge later in the proceedings, as
well. The court issued its Order Denying Defendant's
Motion to Dismiss on February 2, 2018, finding that Mr.
Requejo agreed the State did not act in bad faith when it
violated the discovery rules, that Mr. Requejo was not
prejudiced by the error, that he declined the offer of a
continuance for trial preparation, and that he requested the
trial proceed as scheduled.
On January 30, 2018, a jury convicted Mr. Requejo of both
counts. The court sentenced him to concurrent six to ten-year
periods of incarceration in a Wyoming State Penal
Institution, with credit for 287 days of presentence