There have been some interesting developments in Missouri and Kansas case law:
Traffic and Criminal Cases:
Yet another red light camera ticketing case has been struck down by a Missouri Appellate Court, this time in the Eastern District out of St. Louis:
Red Light Camera Ordinance Voided
The appellant had standing to challenge the red light camera ordinance under the declaratory judgment statute, due to the adverse effect to the vehicle owner under the ordinance. Municipal court lacks subject matter jurisdiction because the ordinance is void, so municipal court review is not an adequate remedy at law, and the vehicle owner’s failure to raise constitutional issues in municipal court does not waive them. Vehicle owner’s payment of the fine does not prevent a challenge to the statute because appellant received no benefit, estoppel does not create jurisdiction, and public policy favors exploration of constitutional issues. Threat of imprisonment shows that the ordinance is criminal so presumption of guilt is unlawful. Ordinance is contrary to traffic statutes. As to unjust enrichment claims, claim against the City is subject to the defense of voluntary payment doctrine, and claim against contractor is subject to genuine dispute. Also subject to genuine dispute is whether City exceeded its police power by enacting ordinance solely to generate revenue. Jeff Bruner and Kimberly Moore, Appellants, vs. City of Arnold and American Traffic Solutions, Inc., Respondents. (Overview Summary)
Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District – ED99034
Next, Missouri confirmed that a person arrested for DUI need not be driving the vehicle; rather, the officers need only sufficient evidence to find probable cause that the defendant had controlled the vehicle while intoxicated:
Controlling Vehicle Is Operating Vehicle
On review of a driver’s license revocation based on a refusal to submit to a chemical test, elements do not include whether appellant was driving. They include whether officer had reasonable grounds to believe that appellant was driving. Reasonable grounds may include hearsay. Remanded to consider whether evidence supports a conclusion that officer had probable cause instead of whether appellant was driving. MATTHEW LAWRENCE-FEHL DAVIS, Petitioner-Respondent, vs. DIRECTOR OF REVENUE, STATE OF MISSOURI, Respondent-Appellant.
Missouri Court of Appeals, Southern District – SD32612
In Kansas, Defendant Suspected of DUI Has No Right to Consult An Attorney Prior to Booking
Under the facts of this case, the 15- to 20-minute delay between the driver’s request to consult with an attorney and his opportunity to do so after completion of the booking and bail process did not deprive him of his right to consult with an attorney under K.S.A. 2011 Supp. 8-1001(k)(9).
Healthcare provider entitled to a lien for reasonable value of services rendered; however, where healthcare provider over-bills and attempts to collect a lien, plaintiff has a remedy under the Kansas Consumer Protection Act
A hospital ordinarily is entitled to be compensated for the reasonable value of services rendered, even absent an express contract, under a theory that services rendered give rise to a debt. Absent ambiguity or uncertainty in the language of a statute, a court is not free to read into the statute something not readily found in it. K.S.A. 65-407 does not provide that substantial compliance satisfies the requirements for an effective and enforceable hospital lien. A hospital must strictly comply with the statute. In order to recover under the Kansas Consumer Protection Act, a party must establish that he or she was “aggrieved” by the violation of the Act. A hospital is permitted to file a lien only for the reasonable and necessary charges for the treatment, care, and maintenance of a patient during his or her hospitalization. Overcharges and duplicate charges are neither reasonable nor necessary. A patient’s interest in the timely availability of his or her entire settlement amount from a party liable for his or her injuries that is encumbered by a hospital lien is directly and negatively affected by a hospital’s filing and attempt to enforce a lien that exceeds the reasonable and necessary charges for the patient’s care. Such a patient qualifies as aggrieved under the Kansas Consumer Protection Act.