FACTSThe facts relevant to this appeal are based on police reports admitted by stipulation and a written offer of proof that relies on Debra Zais's recorded statement to Maple Grove police. For purposes of determining the applicability of the marital testimonial privilege, these facts are undisputed.
Respondent Thomas Zais (Zais), his wife Debra Zais, and their fifteen-year-old daughter live in Maple Grove. The disorderly conduct charge at the center of this appeal stems from a November 15, 2009 incident in the driveway of their house, in front of their attached garage. About 6:20 p.m. Debra Zais called the Maple Grove police and reported that Zais had been drinking, was in the driveway in his pickup truck, and was trying to break down the garage door.
One of the officers responding to the call had been at the Zaises' house the previous evening in response to a phone call by Debra Zais reporting that Zais was arguing with, and had pushed, their daughter. Police told Debra Zais that the pushing conduct was insufficient to support a criminal charge. After the altercation with his daughter, Zais left the house. Debra Zais, who feared for her safety and the safety of her daughter, removed the garage-door opener from Zais's pickup so he could not enter the house.
Judge(s): Harriet Lansing
Jurisdiction: Minnesota Court of Appeals
|Circuit Court Judge(s)|
|Appellant Lawyer(s)||Appellant Law Firm(s)|
|Lori Swanson||Office of the Minnesota Attorney General|
|Paul Baertschi||Tallen & Baertschi|
|Appellee Lawyer(s)||Appellee Law Firm(s)|
|James Kamin||Office of the Public Defender, Fourth Judicial District|
|William Ward||Office of the Public Defender, Fourth Judicial District|