Appeals Court Orders Remand of Senser Release Motion

Updated: 08/30/2012 10:35 AM By: Mark Albert

The judge who presided over the hit-and-run trial of Amy Senser did not follow state court rules when he "summarily" denied her motion for release pending appeal, according to a three-judge panel of the Minnesota Court of Appeals in an order entered into the district court file Wednesday.
In the three-page order, the judges cite a court rule that states, "If the district court denies release pending appeal or imposes conditions of release, the court must state on the record the reasons for the action taken."
Both prosecution and defense, the order says, "agree" that Hennepin County District Court Judge Dan Mabley denied Senser's motion for "release "summarily," and without stating any reasons on the record or making findings."
The appellate court noted that, "(a)lthough the burden is on appellant, to establish she is entitled to relief, rule 28.02, subdivision 7(3), requires that the court state its reasoning, and we conclude that a remand is appropriate."
A hearing is expected to be scheduled soon. A message left with Judge Mabley's chambers was not immediately returned.
Click here to read the order.
Senser, 46, was convicted in May of two counts of criminal vehicular homicide after she hit and killed Minneapolis chef Anousone Phanthavong with her SUV on a darkened Interstate 94 off-ramp in August 2011.
Senser is currently in state prison serving a 41-month sentence and has maintained that she did not know she hit Phanthavong that night.
She is appealing her conviction.