VA Code 16.1-269.1(E) Interpretation

In Moore v. Commonwealth, 259 Va. 431, 439, 527 S.E.2d 406, 410 (2000), the Virginia Supreme Court held that, in cases where the offense was committed on or after July 1, 1996, the notice requirements of Code 16.1-263 and 16.1-264 are subject to waiver by virtue of Code 16.1-269.1(E), which was enacted by the General Assembly in 1996, and any defect or error in the proceedings is cured if not raised before indictment. Code 16.1-269.1(E) provides, in relevant part, that: "an indictment in the circuit court cures any error or defect in any proceeding held in the juvenile court except with respect to the juvenile's age." The Supreme Court in Moore found that, although "the Commonwealth's failure to notify the defendant's biological father of the initiation of juvenile court proceedings . . . created a defect in those proceedings, . . . the defect was cured when the grand jury returned indictments against the defendant on the offenses certified to it by the juvenile court." Moore v. Commonwealth, 259 Va. 405, 410, 527 S.E.2d 415, 418 (2000). The curative statutory provision of Code 16.1-269.1(E) allowed the circuit court to exercise its subject matter jurisdiction.