State v. Henry, No. 19184

CourtSupreme Court of South Dakota
Writing for the CourtSABERS; KONENKAMP
Citation1996 SD 108,554 N.W.2d 472
Decision Date13 March 1996
Docket NumberNo. 19184
PartiesSTATE of South Dakota, Plaintiff and Appellee, v. Timothy HENRY, Defendant and Appellant. . Considered on Briefs

Page 472

554 N.W.2d 472
1996 SD 108
STATE of South Dakota, Plaintiff and Appellee,
v.
Timothy HENRY, Defendant and Appellant.
No. 19184.
Supreme Court of South Dakota.
Considered on Briefs March 13, 1996.
Decided Aug. 28, 1996.

Mark Barnett, Attorney General, Tony L. Portra, Assistant Attorney General, Pierre, for plaintiff and appellee.

Robert L. Spears, Spears Law Office, Watertown, for defendant and appellant.

SABERS, Justice.

¶1 After two jury trials resulting in hung juries, Henry was convicted of two counts of first-degree rape and three counts of second-degree rape. Henry appeals. We affirm.

FACTS

¶2 Timothy Henry (Henry) lived with his wife, Vicki Clark, their son, and her son in Henry, South Dakota. Vicki's son was born in September 1981, before she met Henry. Vicki and Henry were married in November 1983. Their son was born in February 1985.

¶3 On August 4, 1993, Henry and the two boys were working on a car when Henry found a letter written by Vicki to another man. He confronted her with it and an argument ensued. Vicki left the house sometime after midnight. She called the sheriff and officers took her and the two boys to a women's shelter.

¶4 Henry secured a court order for temporary custody of the boys and Vicki was informed of the order. Before Henry obtained custody, the boys were playing in the basement of the shelter and told each other for the first time that Henry had been sexually abusing them. They told their mother, who called a representative of the Department of Social Services to interview the boys. The boys alleged Henry sodomized them at their family home. The abuse apparently started when the older boy was four or five years old, while the family was living in Texas. One of the boys testified he was forced to perform fellatio on Henry at least once a week after the family moved to South Dakota in the spring of 1993.

Page 473

¶5 At trial, the State presented expert testimony from Dr. Clark Likness, who examined the boys on three occasions, August 9, 1993, July 29, 1994, and February 6, 1995. The doctor testified that his first physical examination revealed the boys' rectal vaults were loose and dilated, which was unusual. He also stated the boys had a medical condition known as funneling, where the rectal vault appears wider on the outside and narrows farther into the rectum, like a funnel. Dr. Likness stated the sphincter muscle tone around the rectal area was very loose and very dilated. The boys also exhibited thickened rugi, which are skin folds around the rectum, and redness in their rectums. He testified that in his opinion the boys had been sexually abused. He related the accounts of abuse told by the boys as well as his physical findings from the examinations. His second and third examinations revealed a tightening of the muscles in the rectum, less redness and, in one of the boys, the funneling was no longer present.

¶6 Henry was allowed to cross-examine Dr. Likness about whether funneling, thickened rugi, or redness of the rectum are compatible with conditions other than sexual abuse. He answered "yes" to each.

¶7 Henry's expert, Dr. Robert Fay, stated that the examining doctor's conclusions were erroneous because they were based on symptoms also exhibited by nonabused children. He did not physically examine the boys but examined Dr. Likness' medical reports. Dr. Fay testified that the amount of dilation of the boys' rectums was present in many children. He stated the finding of thickened rugi was "non-specific" and could be found in children who have other conditions and in children who are not abused. He also stated funneling has been "dismissed" as a physical finding regarding sexual abuse because it has been found to be unreliable and because it is present in nonabused children. He also testified that Dr. Likness' findings were compatible with "a child who has had repetitive bowel problems of a constipation nature."

¶8 Although two prior jury trials resulted in hung juries, Henry was convicted at the third trial. He was sentenced to life imprisonment for each of the first-degree rape convictions and twenty-five years for each of the second-degree rape convictions. Henry appeals.

¶9 Whether the exclusion of a photograph from a manual on child sexual abuse constituted an abuse of discretion and resulted in prejudicial error.

¶10 Henry claims the trial court erred when it refused to admit a photograph from a manual on child sexual abuse. Evidentiary rulings of the trial court are reviewed under an abuse of discretion standard. People in Interest of A.R.P., 519 N.W.2d 56, 62 (S.D.1994) (citing Zens v. Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul and Pac. R.R. Co., 479 N.W.2d 155, 159 (S.D.1991)). "For us to disturb the evidentiary rulings of the circuit court, we must determine that an abuse of discretion has occurred. [A]n abuse of discretion refers to a discretion exercised to an end or purpose not justified by, and clearly against reason and evidence." Id. (quoting State v. Moriarty, 501 N.W.2d 352, 355 (S.D.1993); State v. Devall, 489 N.W.2d 371, 374 (S.D.1992)).

¶11 Dr. Likness' first examination revealed funneling. While he did not take photographs of the boys' first anal examination, he testified that a black-and-white drawing of the rectum of a sexually abused child, which was photocopied, represented his findings. Across the bottom of the photocopied page was printed: "Chronic abuse results in loss of sphincter tone and patulous anus." According to Dr. Likness, the drawing was from the book Clinical Symposia, distributed by the Ciba-Geigy Company. The drawing was received in evidence as Exhibit 2 over Henry's objection. The trial court stated, "This exhibit is for illustrative purposes only and whether it's consistent with what the physician has found is a jury question and they can take that into consideration along with all the other evidence."

¶12 Henry's counsel cross-examined the doctor and attempted to introduce Exhibit Z, an enlargement of a picture from The Color Atlas of Child Sexual Abuse, which showed the presence of funneling in a nonabused child. The trial court held that the picture

Page 474

could not be received into evidence because the point could be made without the use of Exhibit Z. Initially, we note that the trial court's reason for excluding the photo--that "you can [make the point] by asking those questions, you don't need a picture showing it"--is not a proper reason for exclusion. The trial court also stated, "the danger you have [with Exhibit Z] is standing up in front of that jury with a blowup and saying these kids have not been sexually abused because the pictures don't match ... that's the danger, it's confusing to the jury and I think it's prejudicial[.]"

¶13 In making this statement, the trial court misstated the argument of the defense, which more correctly would be based on the claim that the pictures did match, therefore no sexual abuse...

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12 practice notes
  • State v. Bowker, No. 24502.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • July 9, 2008
    ...to a discretion exercised to an end or purpose not justified by, and clearly against reason and evidence." Id. (quoting State v. Henry, 1996 SD 108, ¶ 10, 554 N.W.2d 472, 473 (citations [¶ 39.] "All relevant evidence is admissible[.]" SDCL 19-12-2 (Rule 402). Relevant evidence is defined as......
  • State v. Asmussen, No. 23477.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • April 12, 2006
    ...refers to a discretion exercised to an end or purpose not justified by, and clearly against reason and evidence." State v. Henry, 1996 SD 108, ¶ 10, 554 N.W.2d 472, 473 (quoting In re A.R.P., 519 N.W.2d 56, 62 (S.D.1994) (quoting State v. Moriarty, 501 N.W.2d 352, 355 (S.D.1993); State v. D......
  • State v. Dubois, No. 23976.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • February 27, 2008
    ...729 N.W.2d at 349. Prejudicial error is error "`without which the jury would have probably returned a different verdict.'" State v. Henry, 1996 SD 108, ¶ 22, 554 N.W.2d 472, 475 (citation omitted). [¶ 20.] Rule 404(b) allows the State to admit evidence of a defendant's other acts evidence f......
  • Black v. Class, No. 19599
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • February 26, 1997
    ...refers to a discretion exercised to an end or purpose not justified by, and clearly against reason and evidence." State v. Henry, 1996 SD 108, p 10, 554 N.W.2d 472, 473. "Under this standard, 'not only must error be demonstrated, but it must also be shown to be prejudicial error.' " State v......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
12 cases
  • State v. Bowker, No. 24502.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • July 9, 2008
    ...to a discretion exercised to an end or purpose not justified by, and clearly against reason and evidence." Id. (quoting State v. Henry, 1996 SD 108, ¶ 10, 554 N.W.2d 472, 473 (citations [¶ 39.] "All relevant evidence is admissible[.]" SDCL 19-12-2 (Rule 402). Relevant evidence is defined as......
  • State v. Asmussen, No. 23477.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • April 12, 2006
    ...refers to a discretion exercised to an end or purpose not justified by, and clearly against reason and evidence." State v. Henry, 1996 SD 108, ¶ 10, 554 N.W.2d 472, 473 (quoting In re A.R.P., 519 N.W.2d 56, 62 (S.D.1994) (quoting State v. Moriarty, 501 N.W.2d 352, 355 (S.D.1993); State v. D......
  • State v. Dubois, No. 23976.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • February 27, 2008
    ...729 N.W.2d at 349. Prejudicial error is error "`without which the jury would have probably returned a different verdict.'" State v. Henry, 1996 SD 108, ¶ 22, 554 N.W.2d 472, 475 (citation omitted). [¶ 20.] Rule 404(b) allows the State to admit evidence of a defendant's other acts evidence f......
  • Black v. Class, No. 19599
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • February 26, 1997
    ...refers to a discretion exercised to an end or purpose not justified by, and clearly against reason and evidence." State v. Henry, 1996 SD 108, p 10, 554 N.W.2d 472, 473. "Under this standard, 'not only must error be demonstrated, but it must also be shown to be prejudicial error.' " State v......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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