TRENTON L. SHEPERSKY, Appellant,
STATE OF ALASKA, Appellee.
from the Superior Court Trial Court No. 3PA-15-1783 CR, Third
Judicial District, Palmer, Jonathan A. Woodman, Judge.
Appearances: Gavin Kentch, Law Office of Gavin Kentch, LLC,
Anchorage, for the Appellant.
D. Traini, Assistant District Attorney, Palmer, and Jahna
Lindemuth, Attorney General, Juneau, for the Appellee.
Before: Mannheimer, Chief Judge, Allard, Judge, and Suddock,
Superior Court Judge. [*]
an appeal of a superior court's order denying the
defendant bail pending a sentence appeal. For the reasons
explained here, we vacate the court's order and remand
this issue to the superior court for reconsideration of the
defendant's request in light of the guidance provided
facts and prior proceedings
to a partial plea agreement, Trenton L. Shepersky pleaded
guilty to one count of criminally negligent homicide based on
a fatal car collision that Shepersky asserts was caused by an
epileptic seizure. At sentencing, Shepersky's attorney
argued for a sentence of 1 to 3 years to serve. The superior
court imposed a sentence of 9 years' imprisonment with 5
years suspended, 4 years to serve. Shepersky has filed a
sentence appeal challenging his sentence as excessive. That
appeal is currently in the briefing stage; Shepersky has not
moved for expedited consideration of the appeal.
to his remand date, Shepersky asked the superior court for
bail pending appeal, requesting that he remain out of custody
pending the resolution of his sentence appeal. During the
course of his case in the superior court, Shepersky remained
out of custody on bail release for nearly two years without
incident. In his application for bail pending appeal,
Shepersky proposed bail conditions that were more restrictive
than his prior pretrial bail conditions. Specifically, he
proposed that he be released on electronic monitoring and
house arrest, and that he be subject to random drug and
State did not oppose Shepersky's request for bail pending
appeal, but the prosecutor notified the court that the
victim strongly opposed Shepersky's release.
superior court denied Shepersky's request for bail
pending appeal. In its order, the superior court acknowledged
that the proposed bail conditions "would be sufficient
to guarantee [Shepersky's] further appearance."
However, the court declared that it was not convinced that
"the proposed conditions are sufficient to ensure the
safety of the community." The court did not provide any
explanation for this finding. The court also declared that it
was "plac[ing] weight on the victim's opposition to
the request, respecting their desire for finality and the
immediate imposition of sentence to convey the appropriate
condemnation of the community and to prevent others from
experiencing similar loss."
now appeals this bail ruling.
law on bail pending a sentence appeal
AS 12.30.040(a), a trial court may grant bail pending appeal
"if the person establishes, by clear and convincing
evidence, that the person can be released under conditions
that will reasonably assure the appearance of the person and
the safety of the victim, other persons, and the
community." Although the statute refers to
"appeal" in general terms, Alaska courts have
previously interpreted ...