State v. Manley, No. WD 66609.

CourtCourt of Appeal of Missouri (US)
Writing for the CourtVictor C. Howard
Citation223 S.W.3d 887
PartiesSTATE of Missouri, Respondent, v. Cornell Ray MANLEY, Appellant.
Decision Date15 May 2007
Docket NumberNo. WD 66609.
223 S.W.3d 887
STATE of Missouri, Respondent,
v.
Cornell Ray MANLEY, Appellant.
No. WD 66609.
Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District.
May 15, 2007.

[223 S.W.3d 889]

Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon, Atty. Gen., Richard A. Starnes, Assistant Attorney General, Jefferson City, MO, for respondent.

Rosalynn Koch, Assistant State Public Defender, Columbia, MO, for Appellant.

Before Howard, C.J., and Ulrich and Newton, JJ.

VICTOR C. HOWARD, Chief Judge.


Cornell R. Manley appeals his convictions of the Class B felony of assault in the first degree, section 565.050,1 and armed criminal action, section 571.015. Following a jury trial, Manley was sentenced to twenty years for assault and three years for armed criminal action. On appeal, Manley alleges that there was insufficient evidence to show that he was guilty of assault in the first degree and that the trial court abused its discretion in admitting a gun into evidence. In addition, Manley argues that the trial court plainly erred in sentencing him to twenty years for a Class B felony because by statute he could only be sentenced to a maximum of fifteen years.

For the reasons more fully set out below, we affirm the trial court's judgment in that there was sufficient evidence for a jury to find Manley guilty of first-degree assault, and the trial court did not abuse its discretion in admitting the gun into evidence. We reverse the trial court's sentencing, because, as the State has conceded, the trial court did not have the jurisdiction to impose a sentence in excess of fifteen years for a Class B felony. We remand the case only for re-sentencing within the range of punishment for a Class B felony.

Factual Background

Viewing the evidence in light most favorable to the verdict, State v. Bryan, 60 S.W.3d 713, 716 (Mo.App. S.D.2001), the record on appeal shows the following:

In the late evening of May 28, 2005, and into the early morning of May 29, Manley was at Hollywood's, a nightclub in Jefferson City. Manley was at the club with a friend who began to act disorderly toward some of the female patrons of the club.2 The owner of Hollywood's, Frederick Townson, asked Manley's friend to leave and walked him out of the club. Manley followed behind and told Townson that he would take care of his friend. Townson told them that they were not to come back into the club.

A few minutes later, Townson saw Manley and his friend attempting to return to the club. Billy Anthony, the bouncer at

223 S.W.3d 890

Hollywood's, would not allow them to re-enter. A scuffle ensued, and Townson had to physically remove Manley from on top of Anthony and take him outside of the club.

Manley was then seen walking over to a van that was parked across the street from the club. He came back across the street toward the club and raised a silver handgun. Townson testified that Manley was pointing the gun at either him or Anthony through the club's glass doors. Anthony also testified that the gun was pointed at him. Manley fired the gun, which shattered the door and struck Anthony in the calf.3 Manley then "skipped" back to the car, got into the passenger side of the van, and his friend, who had been removed from the club, drove off.

Townson called the police, and Officer Eric Wilde, who was parked nearby, pulled the van over. After the van came to a stop, Manley exited the vehicle and Officer Wilde ordered him to the ground. When other officers arrived, Manley was placed in handcuffs and the driver of the van was also taken into custody. During the arrest, Officer Wilde saw a black semiautomatic handgun on the floorboard of the van. Following the arrests, a silver semiautomatic handgun, which was later identified as the gun that was involved in the shooting at Hollywood's, was found in the glove compartment in front of the passenger seat.

Manley was charged as a persistent misdemeanor offender with the Class B felony of first-degree assault and armed criminal action. At trial, Townson, Anthony, Office Wilde, another arresting officer, and a crime lab technician testified. Both guns were admitted into evidence. The jury returned verdicts of guilty on both counts. This appeal follows.

Sufficiency of the Evidence

In his first point on appeal, Manley argues that there was insufficient evidence for the jury to find beyond a reasonable doubt that he "attempted to cause serious physical injury to Anthony." He points to Anthony's testimony at trial that the gun was "aimed downward."

In a first-degree assault case, the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant "attempt[ed] to kill or knowingly cause[d] or attempt[ed] to cause serious physical injury to another person." § 565.050. "Serious physical injury" is defined as "physical injury that creates a substantial risk of death or that causes serious disfigurement or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any part of the body." § 556.061(28). Manley alleges that the State failed to prove that he attempted to cause serious physical injury.

In assessing the sufficiency of the evidence, an appellate court must view the evidence, and all reasonable inferences to be drawn therefrom, in the light most favorable to the verdict. State v. Grim, 854 S.W.2d 403, 405 (Mo. banc 1993). "The relevant question is whether, after viewing the evidence in a light most favorable to the prosecution, any rational trier of fact could have found the essential elements of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt." State v. Polson, 145 S.W.3d 881, 887 (Mo. App. W.D.2004) (internal quotation omitted).

"Direct evidence of the defendant's intent is rarely available, and intent is most often proven by circumstantial evidence." State v. Stiegler, 129 S.W.3d 1, 4

223 S.W.3d 891

(Mo.App. S.D.2003) (citing State v. Agee, 37 S.W.3d 834, 837 (Mo.App. S.D.2001)). A jury can infer the necessary intent from the "surrounding facts, such as the defendant's conduct before the act, from the act itself, and from the defendant's subsequent conduct." State v. Chambers, 998 S.W.2d 85, 90 (Mo.App. W.D.1999) (internal citation omitted).

It is also "presumed that a person intends the natural and probable consequences of his acts." State v. O'Brien, 857 S.W.2d 212, 218 (Mo. banc 1993). "A jury can infer intent to cause physical bodily harm when `under the circumstances, the prohibited result may reasonably be expected to follow from a voluntary act,...

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19 practice notes
  • State v. Bynum, No. ED 92157.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • 24 novembre 2009
    ...that a defendant has been improperly sentenced as a prior or persistent offender, plain error review is appropriate." State v. Manley, 223 S.W.3d 887, 892 (Mo. App. W.D.2007). We will therefore review points one and two for plain Defendant was charged with two counts of sexual misconduct in......
  • State v. Castoe, No. SD 31117.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • 27 janvier 2012
    ...We affirm the judgment of the trial court. Viewing the evidence in light most favorable to the trial court's judgment, State v. Manley, 223 S.W.3d 887, 889 (Mo.App.2007), the record reveals Appellant and Clarence Routh (“Victim”) had been acquaintances and business associates for a number o......
  • Campbell v. Bowersox, Case No. 11-3209-CV-S-RED-P
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Western District of Missouri
    • 28 février 2012
    ...properly admitted, there is a reasonable probability that the jury would have reached a different conclusion...." State v. Manley, 223 S.W.3d 887, 892 (Mo. App. 2007), quoting State v. Roberts, 948 S.W.2d 577, 592 (mo. banc 1997). We find nothing in the record that diverted the jury's atten......
  • Campbell v. Bowersox, Case No. 11-3209-CV-S-RED-P
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Western District of Missouri
    • 28 février 2012
    ...properly admitted, there is a reasonable probability that the jury would have reached a different conclusion...." State v. Manley, 223 S.W.3d 887, 892 (Mo. App. 2007), quoting State v. Roberts, 948 S.W.2d 577, 592 (mo. banc 1997). We find nothing in the record that diverted the jury's atten......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
19 cases
  • State v. Bynum, No. ED 92157.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • 24 novembre 2009
    ...that a defendant has been improperly sentenced as a prior or persistent offender, plain error review is appropriate." State v. Manley, 223 S.W.3d 887, 892 (Mo. App. W.D.2007). We will therefore review points one and two for plain Defendant was charged with two counts of sexual misconduct in......
  • State v. Castoe, No. SD 31117.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • 27 janvier 2012
    ...We affirm the judgment of the trial court. Viewing the evidence in light most favorable to the trial court's judgment, State v. Manley, 223 S.W.3d 887, 889 (Mo.App.2007), the record reveals Appellant and Clarence Routh (“Victim”) had been acquaintances and business associates for a number o......
  • Campbell v. Bowersox, Case No. 11-3209-CV-S-RED-P
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Western District of Missouri
    • 28 février 2012
    ...properly admitted, there is a reasonable probability that the jury would have reached a different conclusion...." State v. Manley, 223 S.W.3d 887, 892 (Mo. App. 2007), quoting State v. Roberts, 948 S.W.2d 577, 592 (mo. banc 1997). We find nothing in the record that diverted the jury's atten......
  • Campbell v. Bowersox, Case No. 11-3209-CV-S-RED-P
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Western District of Missouri
    • 28 février 2012
    ...properly admitted, there is a reasonable probability that the jury would have reached a different conclusion...." State v. Manley, 223 S.W.3d 887, 892 (Mo. App. 2007), quoting State v. Roberts, 948 S.W.2d 577, 592 (mo. banc 1997). We find nothing in the record that diverted the jury's atten......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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