III. INDICTMENT AND INFORMATION.
Rule 8: Joinder of Offenses and Defendants.
(a) Mandatory Joinder of Offenses.
(1) Criteria for Mandatory Joinder. Two or more offenses shall be joined in the same indictment, presentment, or information, with each offense stated in a separate count, or the offenses consolidated pursuant to Rule 13, if the offenses are:
(A) based on the same conduct or arise from the same criminal episode;
(B) within the jurisdiction of a single court; and
(C) known to the appropriate prosecuting official at the time of the return of the indictment(s), presentment(s), or information(s).
(2) Failure to Join Such Offenses. A defendant shall not be subject to separate trials for multiple offenses falling within Rule 8(a)(1) unless they are severed pursuant to Rule 14.
(b) Permissive Joinder of Offenses. Two or more offenses may be joined in the same indictment, presentment, or information, with each offense stated in a separate count, or consolidated pursuant to Rule 13, if:
(1) the offenses constitute parts of a common scheme or plan; or
(2) they are of the same or similar character.
(c) Joinder of Defendants. An indictment, presentment, or information may charge two or more defendants:
(1) if each of the defendants is charged with accountability for each offense included;
(2) if each of the defendants is charged with conspiracy, and some of the defendants are also charged with one or more offenses alleged to be in furtherance of the conspiracy; or
(3) even if conspiracy is not charged and all of the defendants are not charged in each count, if the several offenses charged:
(A) were part of a common scheme or plan; or
(B) were so closely connected in time, place, and occasion that it would be difficult to separate proof of one charge from proof of the others.
Advisory Commission Comment.
Compulsory joinder of offenses against a single defendant is covered in section (a). This rule is designed to encourage the disposition in a single trial of multiple offenses arising from the same conduct and from the same criminal episode, and should therefore promote efficiency and economy. Where such joinder of offenses might give rise to an injustice, Rule 14(b)(2) allows the trial court to relax the rule.
The commission wishes to make clear that section (a) is meant to stop the practice by some prosecuting attorneys of "saving back" one or more charges arising from the same conduct or from the same criminal episode. Such other charges are barred from future prosecution if known to the appropriate prosecuting official at the time that the other prosecution is commenced, but deliberately not presented to a grand jury. "Appropriate prosecuting official" shall be so construed as to achieve the purpose of this rule, which is the prevention of a deliberate and willful "saving back"of known charges for future prosecution. The refusal of the grand jury to act upon such other charges would not be a violation of this joinder rule so as to bar future prosecution of such charges.
Permissive joinder of offenses, addressed in section (b), allows even unrelated offenses to be joined in the same indictment or presentment, when they are offenses of the same or similar character. These charges may be severed by the defendant as a matter of right under Rule 14(b), unless the offenses are part of a common scheme or plan and the evidence of one would be admissible upon the trial of the others, since a severance in such cases would accomplish nothing in the way of insulating the defendant from the evidence of all of the separate offenses.
Permissive joinder of defendants, addressed in section (c), is aimed at achieving improved judicial economy and efficiency. Severance of defendants is addressed in Rule 14(c).Back to Top