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Larson v. State

Court of Appeals of Alaska

November 9, 2017

LOREN J. LARSON JR., Petitioner,
v.
STATE OF ALASKA, Respondent.

         Original Application for Relief from the Superior Court No. 4FA-01-511 CI, Fourth Judicial District, Fairbanks, Niesje J. Steinkruger, Judge.

          Loren J. Larson Jr., in propria persona, Wasilla, for the Appellant.

          Eric A. Ringsmuth, Assistant Attorney General, Office of Criminal Appeals, Anchorage, and Jahna Lindemuth, Attorney General, Juneau, for the Appellee.

          Before: Mannheimer, Chief Judge, Allard, Judge, and Hanley, District Court Judge. [*]

          OPINION

          MANNHEIMER, JUDGE.

         This case arises from an original application for relief that was filed last year by Loren J. Larson Jr. In November 2016, this Court issued an order denying Larson's original application, and Larson now seeks rehearing of our November 2016 decision.

         When this Court denied Larson's original application for relief, we did so in an unpublished order. Nevertheless, we have decided to formally publish our reasons for allowing Larson to file his petition for rehearing, because our decision involves an interpretation of Alaska Appellate Rule 404(f).

         Rule 404(f) declares that a litigant may not file "a petition for rehearing of the denial of an original application". As we explain in this opinion, despite the wording of this rule, we conclude that Larson is entitled to seek rehearing of our decision denying his original application for relief.

         However, the remainder of our decision on rehearing - i.e., our analysis of Larson's specific arguments on rehearing - will be of little interest to anyone other than Larson and the State of Alaska, so we will answer Larson's arguments in an unpublished order.

         The procedural background of this litigation

         Last year, Loren J. Larson filed the current appellate action - an original application for relief under Alaska Appellate Rule 404. In this original application, Larson asked this Court to re-open the proceedings in one of his earlier appeals: Larson v. State, File No. A-l 1835 - an appeal that we decided in January 2016.[1]

         We denied Larson's original application for relief in a five-page order issued on November 21, 2016. Larson now seeks rehearing of that November 21st decision.

         Why Larson is entitled to seek rehearing of our decision denying his original application for relief

         Larson's right to seek rehearing of our decision is seemingly cast in doubt by Alaska Appellate Rule 404(f), which declares that "a petition for rehearing of the denial of ...


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