Cleveland v. State

In Cleveland v. State, 258 P.3d 878, 886 (Alaska App. 2011) the defendant was convicted of several crimes committed against one victim, M.J., but acquitted of the charges against a second victim, V.B. The presentence report contained a detailed statement V.B. gave to the police alleging that Cleveland committed crimes against her. Cleveland objected to this portion of the presentence report on the ground that she had been acquitted of these charges. The trial judge stated that he would not rely on these statements in sentencing Cleveland, but declined to strike the material from the report. On appeal, we found that Cleveland's reliance on the trial testimony that led to the jury's acquittals on the V.B. charges was the equivalent of an offer of proof based on a testimonial denial. The Court noted that "when the defendant makes an offer of proof that is adequate to raise a genuine dispute, a sentencing judge must take the action required by Rule 32.1(f)." The Court therefore remanded the case to the trial court to "determine whether V.B.'s police statement is true, not true, or irrelevant," and to take the appropriate action under Rule 32.1(f)(5).