In re Sigler, No. 118914 (Kan. 2019)
Nature of Case: Sigler was convicted of a variety of sex offenses in 2007 and sentenced to a prison term. At the conclusion of the term of imprisonment, the state sought to indefinitely detain him as an SVP. A trial was had where Sigler was found not to meet criteria, and he was released to parole.
Sigler’s supervision was subsequently revoked for technical violations and was given a 90-day sanction. Prior to the expiration of that 90-day sanction, the state filed a subsequent SVP petition, which was ultimately granted.
Sigler sought review, alleging that the state had failed to demonstrate a material change in circumstance between the two SVP trials, that the subsequent proceedings were barred by collateral estoppel and res judicata, and that the trial court violated Sigler’s Due Process rights when it failed to declare a mistrial after a witness erroneously testified in front of the jury that he had previously been civilly committed.
Holding: Kansas Supreme Court affirmed Sigler’s commitment. Sigler had not preserved an argument related to change in circumstances and statutory interpretation, and thus it was waived. Further, the Court held that otherwise the second proceeding was not barred by principles of res judicata or collateral estoppel as the state had demonstrated a material change of circumstances from Sigler’s first SVP proceeding. Finally, Sigler’s Due Process rights were not violated by the trial testimony that inappropriately referenced his first commitment proceeding.