RULE 19. TRANSFER WITHIN DISTRICT
(a) Initiation of Process by Defendant. Whenever If a
defendant , who after preliminary
examination or waiver thereof, wishes to plead guilty and the district court
judge of the
district court who would otherwise assigned to take the plea is not
he the parties may request the prosecuting attorney to
select another district court judge from
within the judicial district to accept his the defendant's guilty plea and
(b) Transfer of Records. The prosecuting attorney shall transfer or cause to be
forthwith, to the district judge who will accept the plea, the complete file of the case against
the defendant. Such proceedings will be duly recorded by the clerk and following disposition
of the case, the file shall be returned to the clerk of the court where the charge was
Rule 19 was amended, effective March 1, 2006.
is an adaptation of N.D.C.C. § 29-09-03, (Prosecution on
waiting for term of court.) and is designed to overcome the binding effect of term time when
the term judge is unavailable and the defendant wishes to plead guilty to a criminal charge.
The Rule contemplates that the District Court district court is
always open [N.D.C.C. §
27-05-07. (Purposes for which district courts always open -- When and where issues of fact
triable.)] to accept a plea.
Subdivision (a) Rule 19 provides that the initiation of the
process must come from the
defendant but the selection of the alternate District Judge to accept such plea is left to the
prosecuting attorney the parties acting together may request an alternate district
accept a guilty plea. The procedure is intended to create a balance between the
the prosecution by allowing allow the defendant and the prosecution
to dispose of the case
by pleading guilty to the charge; the selection of the judge by the prosecution is intended
prevent "judge-shopping" by the defendant. Since the defendant is not required to maintain
his guilty plea after initiating the process, he is protected from an "unsympathetic" judge
because the effect of a plea of not guilty reverts the action to its original status before the
District Court of the term without waiting for the original judge to become
alternate judge may take the plea as requested or decline the request.
Subdivision Former subdivision (b) is adapted from
N.D.C.C. § 29-09-04,
(Appearance in court--Chambers--Plea.), and provides that when the an action is
the file shall must be forwarded to the judge who will receive the plea. The proceedings
be held in the judge's chambers, will be recorded and will have the same force and effect as
if the proceedings were held in open court of the term was deleted effective March
Rule 19 was amended, effective March 1, 2006, in response to the December 1, 2002, revision of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure. The language and organization of the rule were changed to make the rule more easily understood and to make style and terminology consistent throughout the rules.
SOURCES: Joint Procedure Committee Minutes of January 27-28, 2005, pages 15-16;
April 24-26, 1973, page 10; October 17-20, 1972, pages 2-4; September 26-27, 1968, pages
; Wright, Federal Practice and Procedure: Criminal, § 311 (1969); Barron,
Practice and Procedure: Criminal, § 2071 (1951).
SUPERSEDED: N.D.C.C. §§ 29-09-03, 29-09-04.