The sole issue before the Court is whether the Helena Municipal Court violated Petitioner Kristi Anne O’Connell’s (“O’Connell”) double jeopardy protections under Montana Code Annotated § 46–11–504(1). Prior prosecution of an offense in any jurisdiction bars subsequent prosecution if the first prosecution resulted in an acquittal or a conviction and the subsequent prosecution arose “out of the same transaction.” Two charges arise out of the same transaction if the conduct for both offenses is motivated by a purpose to accomplish a criminal objective, and the conduct is necessary or incidental to accomplishing that objective. O'Connell's appeal provides the Court with an opportunity to reconsider whether strict liability offenses, such as driving under the influence (“DUI”), can ever arise out of the same transaction as other offenses.
Christine Hutchison, Oral Argument Preview, City of Helena v. O'Connell: Double Jeopardy and Strict Liability Offenses, 79 Mont. L. Rev. Online 72, https://scholarship.law.umt.edu/mlr_online/vol79/iss1/11.