This opinion will be unpublished and

may not be cited except as provided by

Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (2000).







State of Minnesota,





Scott Allen Richie,



Filed December 26, 2001


Lansing, Judge


Martin County District Court

File No. K400215



Mike Hatch, Attorney General, Suite 500, 525 Park Ave., St. Paul, MN  55103; and


Terry Viesselman, Martin County Attorney, Michael D. Trushenski, Assistant County Attorney, Suite 130, 923 North State Street, Fairmont, MN 56031 (for respondent)


John M. Stuart, State Public Defender, Susan K. Maki, Assistant Public Defender, Suite 600, 2829 University Ave. SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414 (for appellant)


            Considered and decided by Kalitowski, Presiding Judge, Lansing, Judge, and Hanson, Judge.

U N P U B L I S H E D   O P I N I O N




Scott Richie appeals his gross-misdemeanor conviction for driving while under the influence of alcohol.  He contends that it is unconstitutional to use a previous, uncounseled implied-consent license revocation to enhance his offense from a misdemeanor to a gross misdemeanor.  This issue was previously raised and decided in State v. Dumas, 587 N.W.2d 299, 302-04 (Minn. App. 1998), review denied (Minn. Feb. 24, 1999).  Because Richie points to no change in statutory law or constitutional interpretation and no unanticipated result in the application of Dumas, we affirm.



            Scott Richie was convicted of a gross misdemeanor for driving while under the influence of alcohol (DWI) in violation of Minn. Stat. § 169.121, subd. 1(e) and subd. 3(c)(2) (1998) (recodified at various places from Minn. Stat. § 169A.07 to § 169A.76).  Richie's offense was charged and sentenced as a gross misdemeanor because his license had been revoked within the five years prior to this violation in an implied-consent proceeding.

At the omnibus hearing on his current conviction, Richie argued that it was a violation of his constitutional protections to allow his uncounseled civil revocation to enhance the penalty level of his DWI charge when the supreme court has disallowed the use of an uncounseled criminal revocation for enhancement purposes.  See State v. Nordstrom, 331 N.W.2d 901, 905 (Minn. 1983).

After denial of his motion to dismiss the gross misdemeanor charges, Richie waived a jury trial and submitted the case to the district court on stipulated facts consistent with the procedure outlined in State v. Lothenbach, 296 N.W.2d 854 (Minn.1980).  The district court found Richie guilty of gross misdemeanor DWI and Richie appeals.



            On appeal, Richie concedes that the constitutional issue he raises was previously raised and decided in Dumas, 587 N.W.2d at 302-04.  In Dumas, we interpreted Nordstrom to prohibit a penalty-level enhancement based on an unconstitutionally obtained guilty plea but not to prohibit a penalty-level enhancement based on an uncounseled revocation in a civil proceeding.  Id.  In other words, when the defendant receives constitutionally required due process in the prior civil proceeding, that proceeding can be used to enhance a subsequent criminal charge.  Id. at 302.  Richie urges reconsideration of the Dumas holding.

“The doctrine of stare decisis directs that we adhere to former decisions in order that there might be stability in the law.”  Oanes v. Allstate Ins. Co., 617 N.W.2d 401, 406 (Minn. 2000) (citing Naftalin v. King, 257 Minn. 498, 509, 102 N.W.2d 301, 308 (1960)). Stare decisis is a policy developed for the rational application of legal principles but "is not an inflexible rule of law."  Id. (quoting Johnson v. Chicago, Burlington, & Quincy R.R. Co., 243 Minn. 58, 68, 66 N.W.2d 763, 770 (1954)).  Precedent should not command adherence if, after being tested by experience, it is “inconsistent with the sense of justice or with the social welfare.” Id. (quoting Benjamin N. Cardozo, The Nature of the Judicial Process 150 (1921)).

            Richie urges us to reconsider Dumas because it creates two categories of defendants—those who have been afforded the right to counsel in a prior DWI proceeding and those who have not been afforded the right to counsel in a prior implied-consent proceeding.  This disparity was considered in Dumas and rejected as a basis for disallowing the use of an uncounseled civil revocation for enhancement purposes.  Instead, Dumas defined the disparity that would trigger disallowance as the disparity between a constitutionally obtained revocation and an unconstitutionally obtained revocation.

Richie advances no argument for reconsideration of Dumas that is based on a consideration unanticipated by the Dumas analysis or that is based on a change in statutory law or constitutional interpretation.  Because Richie has presented no compelling argument for reconsideration, we affirm.