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Go back to: Title 12 Code of Criminal Procedure
Go back to: Chapter 55. Sentencing and Probation.

Sec. 12.55.145. Prior convictions.
 (a) For purposes of considering prior convictions in imposing sentence under
     (1) AS 12.55.125(c), (d), or (e),
          (A) a prior conviction may not be considered if a period of 10 or more years has elapsed between the date of the defendant’s unconditional discharge on the immediately preceding offense and commission of the present offense unless the prior conviction was for an unclassified or class A felony;

          (B) a conviction in this or another jurisdiction of an offense having elements similar to those of a felony defined as such under Alaska law at the time the offense was committed is considered a prior felony conviction;

          (C) two or more convictions arising out of a single, continuous criminal episode during which there was no substantial change in the nature of the criminal objective are considered a single conviction unless the defendant was sentenced to consecutive sentences for the crimes; offenses committed while attempting to escape or avoid detection or apprehension after the commission of another offense are not part of the same criminal episode or objective;

     (2) AS 12.55.125(l),
          (A) a conviction in this or another jurisdiction of an offense having elements similar to those of a most serious felony is considered a prior most serious felony conviction;

          (B) commission of and conviction for offenses relied on as prior most serious felony offenses must occur in the following order: conviction for the first offense must occur before commission of the second offense, and conviction for the second offense must occur before commission of the offense for which the defendant is being sentenced;

     (3) AS 12.55.135(g),
          (A) a prior conviction may not be considered if a period of five or more years has elapsed between the date of the defendant’s unconditional discharge on the immediately preceding offense and commission of the present offense unless the prior conviction was for an unclassified or class A felony;

          (B) a conviction in this or another jurisdiction of an offense having elements similar to those of a crime against a person or a crime involving domestic violence is considered a prior conviction;

          (C) two or more convictions arising out of a single, continuous criminal episode during which there was no substantial change in the nature of the criminal objective are considered a single conviction unless the defendant was sentenced to consecutive sentences for the crimes; offenses committed while attempting to escape or avoid detection or apprehension after the commission of another offense are not part of the same criminal episode or objective;

     (4) AS 12.55.125(i),
          (A) a conviction in this or another jurisdiction of an offense having elements similar to those of a sexual felony is a prior conviction for a sexual felony;

          (B) a felony conviction in another jurisdiction making it a crime to commit any lewd and lascivious act upon a child under the age of 16 years, with the intent of arousing, appealing to, or gratifying the sexual desires of the defendant or the victim is a prior conviction for a sexual felony;

          (C) two or more convictions arising out of a single, continuous criminal episode during which there was no substantial change in the nature of the criminal objective are considered a single conviction unless the defendant was sentenced to consecutive sentences for the crimes; offenses committed while attempting to escape or avoid detection or apprehension after the commission of another offense are not part of the same criminal episode or objective;

     (5) AS 12.55.135(a),
          (A) a prior conviction may not be considered if a period of five or more years has elapsed between the date of the defendant’s unconditional discharge on the immediately preceding offense and commission of the present offense unless the prior conviction was for an unclassified or class A felony;

          (B) a conviction in this or another jurisdiction of an offense having elements similar to those of a felony or misdemeanor defined as such under Alaska law at the time the offense was committed is considered a prior conviction;

          (C) two or more convictions arising out of a single, continuous criminal episode during which there was no substantial change in the nature of the criminal objective are considered a single conviction unless the defendant was sentenced to consecutive sentences for the crimes; offenses committed while attempting to escape or avoid detection or apprehension after the commission of another offense are not part of the same criminal episode or objective.

 (b) When sentence is imposed under this chapter, prior convictions not expressly admitted by the defendant must be proved by authenticated copies of court records served on the defendant or the defendant’s counsel at least 20 days before the date set for imposition of sentence.

 (c) The defendant shall file with the court and serve on the prosecuting attorney notice of denial, consisting of a concise statement of the grounds relied upon and that may be supported by affidavit or other documentary evidence, no later than 10 days before the date set for the imposition of sentence if the defendant
     (1) denies
          (A) the authenticity of a prior judgment of conviction;

          (B) that the defendant is the person named in the judgment;

          (C) that the elements of a prior offense committed in this or another jurisdiction are similar to those of a
               (i) felony defined as such under Alaska law;

               (ii) most serious felony, defined as such under Alaska law;

               (iii) crime against a person or a crime involving domestic violence;

          (D) that a prior conviction occurred within the period specified in (a)(1)(A) or (3)(A) of this section; or

          (E) that a previous conviction occurred in the order required under (a)(2)(B) of this section; or

     (2) alleges that two or more purportedly separate prior convictions should be considered a single conviction under (a)(1)(C) or (3)(C) of this section.

 (d) Matters alleged in a notice of denial shall be heard by the court sitting without a jury. If the defendant introduces substantial evidence that the defendant is not the person named in a prior judgment of conviction, that the judgment is not authentic, that the conviction did not occur within the period specified in (a)(1)(A) or (3)(A) of this section, that a conviction should not be considered a prior felony conviction under (a)(1)(B) of this section, a prior most serious felony conviction under (a)(2)(A) of this section, or a prior crime against a person or a crime involving domestic violence conviction under (a)(3)(B) of this section, or that a previous conviction did not occur in the order required under (a)(2)(B) of this section, then the burden is on the state to prove the contrary beyond a reasonable doubt. The burden of proof that two or more convictions should be considered a single conviction under (a)(1)(C) or (3)(C) of this section is on the defendant by clear and convincing evidence.

 (e) The authenticated judgments of courts of record of the United States, the District of Columbia, or of any state, territory, or political subdivision of the United States are prima facie evidence of conviction.

 (f) Under this section, a prior conviction has occurred when a defendant has entered a plea of guilty, guilty but mentally ill, or nolo contendere, or when a verdict of guilty or guilty but mentally ill has been returned by a jury or by the court.

 (g) In this section,
     (1) “crime against a person” has the meaning given in AS 12.55.135;

     (2) “crime involving domestic violence” has the meaning given in AS 18.66.990.

Other Sections in this Chapter: