State v. Weigand, 03-812.

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Montana
Citation2005 MT 201,119 P.3d 74
Docket NumberNo. 03-812.,03-812.
PartiesSTATE of Montana, Plaintiff and Respondent, v. Jean Paul WEIGAND, Defendant and Appellant.
Decision Date16 August 2005

For Appellant: Matthew C. Claus, Bozeman, Montana.

For Respondent: Mike McGrath, Montana Attorney General, Joslyn M. Hunt, Assistant Attorney General, Helena, Montana; Dennis Paxinos, Yellowstone County Attorney, Rod Souza, Deputy County Attorney, Billings, Montana.

Justice PATRICIA O. COTTER delivered the Opinion of the Court.

¶ 1 Following a jury trial in the Thirteenth Judicial District, Yellowstone County, Jean Paul Weigand (Weigand) was convicted of criminal endangerment for placing his young son in danger during a domestic dispute. He appeals. We affirm.

ISSUE

¶ 2 The only issue on appeal is whether the jury had sufficient evidence to convict Weigand of the offense of criminal endangerment.

FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

¶ 3 At approximately 2:00 a.m. on November 24, 2002, three Billings police officers responded to a 9-1-1 domestic dispute call. They were informed by dispatch that a woman named Crystal wanted a man removed from her house. The dispatch officer also told the police that a knife, and possibly a gun, were involved. Upon arriving at the scene, the officers witnessed, through a glass door, a man and a woman engaged in a loud, profanity-riddled argument. The man, later identified as Weigand, was pacing in the kitchen and holding a young boy, almost four years old, in his right arm. The child was later identified as K.W., Weigand's and Crystal's child. K.W. was held in a way this his chest was against Weigand's chest. While assessing the situation before announcing their presence, the officers saw a large kitchen knife, blade upwards, protruding from Weigand's back pocket. Another broken knife lay nearby on the kitchen floor.

¶ 4 Crystal noticed the officers at the front door and went to the door. Weigand, upon seeing the police, shifted the child to his left arm and removed the knife from his pocket as he followed Crystal to the door. When Crystal opened the door, the officers forcibly removed her from the home and began to loudly and repeatedly order Weigand to drop the knife. Weigand refused, told the officers they would have to shoot him, and continued advancing toward the officers with knife in hand and carrying his child. Weigand stood in the threshold of the house with the door open telling the officers to leave the property. The officers continued to tell him to put down the knife and Weigand repeatedly told them he would not and that they should shoot him. By this time, the officers had unholstered their weapons and had them in the "low ready" position pointed toward Weigand.

¶ 5 Weigand advanced toward one of the officers, Kruger, until Kruger felt cornered on the porch and was forced to jump over a porch rail. Weigand, using the steps, then followed Kruger down into the yard and for several minutes, Weigand and the three officers screamed loudly at each other across the dark yard. Crystal, who had become uncooperative with the officers upon seeing Weigand confront the officers with a knife while still holding her son, was being confined in one of the squad cars for her safety and to keep her from interfering in the officers' attempt to disarm Weigand. She, too, was screaming at Weigand during this time to put down the knife and her child. Tensions, by this time at a high level, continued to escalate with the noise and confusion of the situation taking place in the dark. The officers continually ordered Weigand to drop the knife and put down the child. Rather than comply with either order, Weigand repeatedly challenged the officers to shoot him. Weigand backed Kruger against a fence at which time Kruger jumped the fence and circled around the house. By the time he got back to the front of the house, Weigand had taken K.W. and gone inside and closed the door behind them. The SWAT team arrived shortly thereafter and after a few hours of negotiations, Weigand allowed K.W. to leave the house and go to Crystal. At some time later, Weigand surrendered.

¶ 6 On November 26, 2002, the State filed an Information charging Weigand with felony Assault on a Peace Officer and felony Criminal Endangerment. He entered a plea of not guilty to both charges and a trial was conducted on April 10, 2003, through April 16, 2003. At the conclusion of the trial, the jury found Weigand guilty of criminal endangerment but could not reach a unanimous verdict on the assault charge. The District Court sentenced Weigand to eight years in Montana State Prison. Weigand filed a timely appeal.

STANDARD OF REVIEW

¶ 7 We review a question on the sufficiency of the evidence in a criminal matter to determine whether, after reviewing 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. We review a jury's verdict to determine whether sufficient evidence exists to support the verdict, not whether the evidence could have supported a different result. State v. Field, 2005 MT 181, ¶ 15, 328 Mont. 26, ¶ 15, 116 P.3d 813, ¶ 15 (internal citations omitted). It is within the province of the jury to weigh the evidence based on the credibility of the witnesses and determine which version of events should prevail. State v. Stucker, 1999 MT 14, ¶ 22, 293 Mont. 123, ¶ 22, 973 P.2d 835, ¶ 22 (citation omitted).

DISCUSSION

¶ 8 Weigand maintains that at no time did he threaten Crystal, his child, or the officers with the knife. In fact, he contends that when the officers first told him to drop the knife, he put the knife...

To continue reading

Request your trial
16 cases
  • State v. Ankeny, DA 09-0311.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Montana
    • October 26, 2010
    ...of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt." State v. Potter, 2008 MT 381, ¶ 15, 347 Mont. 38, 197 P.3d 471 (quoting State v. Weigand, 2005 MT 201, ¶ 7, 328 Mont. 198, 119 P.3d 74). ¶ 19 Ankeny was convicted of violating § 45-5-206(1)(a), MCA, which provides:Partner or family member assault—pen......
  • State v. Burnett, DA 19-0738
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Montana
    • January 18, 2022
    ...293 P.3d 843. Accordingly, whether the evidence could have supported a different result proves immaterial to our review. State v. Weigand, 2005 MT 201, ¶ 7, 328 Mont. 198, 119 P.3d 74. DISCUSSION ¶l 6 1. Whether the delay in bringing Burnett to trial violated her constitutional right to a s......
  • State v. Bekemans, DA 11–0630.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Montana
    • January 22, 2013
    ...the credibility of witnesses, weigh the evidence, and ultimately determine which version of events should prevail. State v. Weigand, 2005 MT 201, ¶ 7, 328 Mont. 198, 119 P.3d 74. Thus, it is immaterial to our review whether the evidence could have also supported a different result. Weigand,......
  • State v. Burnett
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Montana
    • January 18, 2022
    ...293 P.3d 843. Accordingly, whether the evidence could have supported a different result proves immaterial to our review. State v. Weigand, 2005 MT 201, ¶ 7, 328 Mont. 198, 119P.3d 74. DISCUSSION ¶16 1. Whether the delay in bringing Burnett to trial violated her constitutional right to a spe......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT