from the Superior Court in Maricopa County No.
CR2015-144306-001 The Honorable James R. Rummage, Judge Pro
Arizona Attorney General's Office, Phoenix By Jennifer L.
Holder Counsel for Appellee
Maricopa County Public Defender's Office, Phoenix By
Carlos Daniel Carrion Counsel for Appellant
Presiding Judge Diane M. Johnsen delivered the opinion of the
Court, in which Judge Michael J. Brown and Judge Jennifer M.
Robert Angel Gomez was convicted of two counts of aggravated
driving while under the influence with a passenger under 15
years of age. He now argues Arizona Revised Statutes
("A.R.S.") section 28-1383(A)(3) (2019) required
the State to prove he knew his passenger was younger than 15
and that the superior court erred by failing to so instruct
the jury. We hold the defendant's knowledge of
the passenger's age is not an element of the offense and
affirm the convictions.
AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
Gomez crashed his car while driving a 14-year-old girl home
from a party one night. He did not know the girl well and did
not know how old she was. At the scene, police found a bottle
of pills in Gomez's car and he admitted smoking marijuana
earlier in the day.
As relevant here, Gomez was charged with two counts of
aggravated driving while under the influence
("DUI") with a passenger under 15 years of age,
each a Class 6 felony. A.R.S. § 28-1383(A)(3). Before
trial, Gomez asked the superior court to instruct the jury
that the State must prove he knew his passenger was younger
than 15. The court declined to give the instruction, and the
jury convicted him of both charges, along with four other
felony offenses. The superior court sentenced him on the DUI
offenses to two concurrent one-year terms of imprisonment.
Gomez timely appealed, challenging only his convictions under
§ 28-1383(A)(3). We have jurisdiction pursuant to
Article 6, Section 9, of the Arizona Constitution, and A.R.S.
§§ 12-120.21(A)(1) (2019), 13-4031 (2019) and
Gomez argues § 28-1383 required the State to prove he
knew his passenger was younger than 15 at the time he
committed the DUI offenses. This is a legal issue that we
review de novo. See State v. Falcone, 228 Ariz. 168,
170, ¶ 9 (App. 2011). "Our task in interpreting the
meaning of a statute is to fulfill the intent of the
legislature that wrote it." State v. Williams,
175 Ariz. 98, 100 (1993). We first examine the statute's
words. Id. If the meaning of the text is unclear, we
then consider other factors such as the statute's
context, history, subject matter, effects and consequences,
spirit and purpose. Mail Boxes v. Indus. Comm'n,
181 Ariz. 119, 122 (1995). Toward that end, we also examine
statutes that are in pari materia, meaning those of
the same subject or general purpose. See Stambaugh v.
Killian, 242 Ariz. 508, 509, ¶ 7 (2017).
In relevant part, § 28-1383 states:
A. A person is guilty of aggravated driving . . . while under
the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs if the person