Court of Appeals of Missouri, Eastern District, Southern Division
from the Circuit Court of Cape Girardeau County 13CG-CR01274
Honorable Craig D. Brewer
M. Gaertner, Judge
Kuntze (Appellant) appeals the judgment of the trial court
finding him guilty of the offense of creating a public
nuisance, in violation of an ordinance of the City of Cape
Girardeau (City). Appellant argues that the ordinance is
vague and therefore the City failed to meet its burden of
proof. Appellant also argues the ordinance is
unconstitutional. We affirm.
January 14, 2014, an officer with the Cape Girardeau Police
Department observed a green Jeep with two flat tires parked
in the driveway of Appellant's property. The tags on the
license plate had expired in March of 2007. The officer left
a notice advising that the vehicle had to be currently
registered and operable or removed from the property within
January 22, 2014, the officer returned and found the vehicle
in the same condition. The vehicle was titled to Appellant.
The officer mailed Appellant a citation for violation of City
Ordinance Section 13-52, which states the following:
Except as provided in other regulations, any inoperable
vehicle or part thereof, located on any property in the city
is hereby declared to be a public nuisance.
citation stated facts supporting the violation: "Failure
to maintain property free of inoperable vehicles by having a
green Jeep with expired license plates at [Appellant's
parties appeared before the trial court, which heard argument
and thereafter found Appellant guilty. The trial court found
that Section 13-51 of the City ordinances defines
"inoperable vehicle" as follows:
[A]ny vehicle which is not registered or which is improperly
registered within the state, or is not displaying proper
license plates, or is inoperable for more than seventy-two
trial court concluded that because the tags on
Appellant's license plates were expired, this meant the
plates were "improper" under the ordinance. The
trial court also found the statute was not unconstitutional.
The trial court sentenced Appellant to a fine of $200 in
accordance with City ordinances. This appeal follows.
raises three points on appeal. First, he argues that the
trial court erred in concluding he violated the nuisance
ordinance because the terms of the ordinance are vague. In
Point II, Appellant argues this same vagueness renders the
ordinance unconstitutional. Appellant argues in Point III
that application of the ordinance violates ...