Criminal Procedure in Alabama

Porter Batts was arrested for the crimes of trafficking in cocaine and first-degree criminal mischief in February 2009. He was not brought to trial until August 11, 2014. On May 8, 2009, Batts filed a motion in which he demanded a speedy trial. On April 12, 2013, Batts filed a motion to dismiss the charges against him, alleging a violation of his right to a speedy trial pursuant to Barker v. Wingo, 407 U.S. 514 (1972). The trial court held a hearing on the motion on the day that the case was set for trial. It denied the motion.

Batts appealed. Remanded. In Barker, the United States Supreme Court directed that, when determining whether a defendant’s constitutional right to a speedy trial has been violated, a court must consider: (1) the length of the delay; (2) the reasons for the delay; (3) the defendant’s assertion of his right to a speedy trial; and (4) the prejudice to the defendant. In this case, it does not appear that the trial court considered and weighed each of the Barker factors. “Accordingly, this Court is unable to determine whether the trial court considered and weighed the factors set out in Barker.” The case is due to be remanded.Batts v. State of Alabama.