ARS 22-320 Interpretation
In Goldman v. Kautz, 111 Ariz. 431, 531 P.2d 1138 (1975) the Arizona Supreme Court analyzed A.R.S. 22-320, which addresses pretrial and trial procedures for justice courts. Section 22-320 reads:
"A trial by jury shall be had if demanded by either the state or defendant. Unless the demand is made before commencement of the trial, a trial by jury shall be deemed waived."
The supreme court held that 22-320 did not create a substantive right to a jury trial, but instead, "was intended to be procedural and must be read as meaning that a trial by jury shall be had if demanded in cases where a jury trial is appropriate." 111 Ariz. at 432, 531 P.2d at 1139.
The Goldman court also stated: "If the Legislature intended to grant a jury trial in every case, it would have no doubt said so in plain, explicit language." Id.
The state contends that, to create a substantive right to a jury trial, the legislature must do so in "plainer and clearer" language than that found in 22-320, and the language of 28-1381(F) is insufficient to create a substantive jury trial right.