TO: Joint Procedure Committee
FROM: Mike Hagburg
RE: Rule 4, N.D.R.Crim.P., Arrest Warrant or Summons Upon Complaint
Form and style amendments to Fed.R.Crim.P. 4 were approved by Congress in December 2003. Attached is a proposed amended version of N.D.R.Crim.P. 4 which contains form and style amendments in the spirit of the federal amendments. The North Dakota rule is different in several ways from the federal rule, so the federal changes were not copied outright. No substantive change to N.D.R.Crim.P. 4 is intended--instead, the amendments are designed to make the rule more easily understood.
The rationale for the form and style changes proposed for N.D.R.Crim.P. 4 is explained in detail in Sara Selby's memo, which is attached. Also attached is a comparison of the old federal rule and the amended federal rule with commentary on the federal changes.
One observation regarding N.D.R.Crim.P. 4's explanatory note: there is very little in the existing explanatory note that expands on what is contained in the rule. Much of the time, the explanatory note essentially explains the rule by rephrasing the rule's provisions. While this may have been necessary when the criminal rules originally were instituted, such an explanation may no longer be necessary. The Committee may wish to consider whether larger scale editing of the explanatory note should be done. Discussion of the requirements of N.D.C.C. § 29-05-08, which is superseded and no longer in the Code, was deleted from the explanatory note as was other outdated material.