D.G. v. Commonwealth of Kentucky, Court of Appeals, Fayette County, TO BE PUBLISHEDThe court vacated and remanded the court’s order finding child in contempt as well as accepting the plea on the underlying juvenile status offense. The Court held that contempt cannot be found where the underlying guilty plea did not receive the full due process rights guaranteed by the Constitution under KRS 600.020(61)(d) and 610.010(11).
In this case, there was no Boykin colloquy at the time that D.G. entered the plea, in fact the attorney just stated that there would be a stipulation. Thus, the court held the plea was not clearly voluntary and intelligent since there was little to no explanation of possible consequences of an admission prior to accepting it. The court reiterated that juvenile’s should have heightened assurance of the protection of their rights.
Since the plea was entered without these protections, the court orders that the court held D.G. in contempt of were not valid court orders and thus both findings were required to be vacated and the case remanded back to family court.
Contributed by La Mer Kyle-Griffiths