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State v. Hoover

Supreme Judicial Court of Maine

August 11, 2015

STATE OF MAINE
v.
WADE R. HOOVER

Argued June 16, 2015.

Petition for certiorari filed at, 11/10/2015

Jamesa J. Drake, Esq., Drake Law, LLC, Auburn, for appellant Wade R. Hoover.

Meaghan Maloney, District Attorney, Prosecutorial District IV, Augusta, for appellee State of Maine.

Panel: SAUFLEY, C.J., and ALEXANDER, MEAD, GORMAN, JABAR, and HJELM, JJ.

OPINION

Page 1282

JABAR, J.

[¶1] Wade R. Hoover appeals from an order of the trial court ( Murphy, J. ) denying his motion to dismiss the State's indictments of thirteen counts of gross sexual assault (Class A), 17-A M.R.S. § 253(1)(C) (2014). Hoover argues that the State's indictments violate constitutional protections against double jeopardy because (1) he has already been punished for the sexually assaultive conduct by way of his federal prison sentence related to federal child pornography convictions; and (2) the state and federal investigative and prosecutorial agencies colluded to the extent that they ceased to operate as separate sovereigns, thus triggering an exception to the " dual sovereignty" doctrine of double jeopardy jurisprudence. We affirm.

I. BACKGROUND

[¶2] Viewed in the light most favorable to the State, the motion record supports the following facts. See Heon v. State, 2007 ME 131, ¶ 5, 931 A.2d 1068.

[¶3] On October 3, 2012, U.S. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) agents and Maine State Police (MSP) officers jointly conducted a consented-to search of computers at an office in Augusta, after the MSP Computer Crimes Unit received a tip that a computer registered to that office was the source of child pornography. The investigation led to Hoover, who admitted to his involvement. Investigators discovered on Hoover's computer hundreds of images of child pornography as well as videos that depicted Hoover sexually assaulting children. State police immediately took Hoover into custody on a charge of possession of sexually explicit materials (Class C), 17-A M.R.S. § 284(1)(C) (2014).

[¶4] Hoover was arraigned on the charge of possession of sexually explicit materials on October 5, 2012. That same day, federal agents obtained a warrant for Hoover's arrest. The warrant was not immediately executed, however, and instead was filed as a detainer so that Hoover could be taken into federal custody if the State dismissed its charge or if Hoover were to be released from state custody.

[¶5] Federal and state authorities continued to investigate Hoover while he remained in state custody between October and December 2012, with HSI agents and MSP detectives often conducting joint searches and interviews. During that time, the Kennebec County District Attorney's Office communicated with federal prosecutors regarding the status of the State's case against Hoover. An October 9, 2012, Kennebec County District Attorney's Office internal memorandum reads:

Feds will be taking the production piece . . . There will also be potentially a [gross sexual assault charge] in Skowhegan . . . [D]o not let [Hoover] plead to [possession of sexually explicit materials] ...

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