State v. Wills, No. 04-0202.

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Iowa
Writing for the CourtWIGGINS, Justice.
Citation696 N.W.2d 20
Docket NumberNo. 04-0202.
Decision Date06 May 2005
PartiesSTATE of Iowa, Appellee, v. Kent Bradley WILLS, Appellant.

696 N.W.2d 20

STATE of Iowa, Appellee,
v.
Kent Bradley WILLS, Appellant

No. 04-0202.

Supreme Court of Iowa.

May 6, 2005.


696 N.W.2d 21
Linda Del Gallo, State Appellate Defender, and Tricia Johnston, Assistant State Appellate Defender, for appellant

Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, Kevin Cmelik, Assistant Attorney General, John P. Sarcone, County Attorney, and John Judisch, Assistant County Attorney, for appellee.

WIGGINS, Justice.

Kent Wills appeals his conviction for second-degree burglary contending that an attached garage is a separate occupied structure from that of the living quarters of the residence. In this appeal, we must determine whether trial counsel was ineffective for (1) failing to move for judgment of acquittal on the basis there was insufficient evidence to convict Wills of second-degree burglary when he entered an attached garage of a residence when no persons were present in the garage, but when persons were present in the living quarters; and (2) failing to object to a jury instruction based on this same argument. Because we find there was no legal basis for the motion for judgment of acquittal or the objection to the jury instruction, Wills' trial counsel was not ineffective. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the district court.

I. Background Facts and Proceedings.

Around 1 a.m., an Ankeny resident called the local police to report that a car alarm sounded in the resident's neighborhood. The city dispatched a police officer to the location. Observing nothing unusual, the officer left the area, only to be stopped a couple of blocks later by a person who informed the officer he had witnessed someone running from the area of the car alarm. As the officer started driving back to the area of the car alarm, he noticed a person walking on the sidewalk. The officer asked the person, a minor, if he had noticed anybody running from the area. The minor answered that he had not. While the officer and another officer were speaking to the minor, another resident of the neighborhood arrived in her car and informed the officers that she had observed two people, one of whom was heavy set with a blinking light on his back pocket, walking in the area of her neighbor's residence. She observed the heavier-set individual, later identified as Wills, enter her neighbor's attached garage

696 N.W.2d 22
through an unlocked service door. She further observed a smaller individual standing by a van parked in the neighbor's driveway

The officers eventually let the minor leave even though they found a large amount of coins, a flashlight, and an electronic pocket organizer in his pockets. After releasing the minor, the police officers drove to the residence where the neighbor observed the two suspicious people and woke the owner. The owner, his wife, and two daughters were in the residence sleeping at the time. After a search of his vehicles, the owner discovered change and an electronic pocket organizer were missing from the vehicles. The owner's daughter reported a diamond ring and some change were missing from her vehicle. The officers then contacted the minor's parents, who informed the officers the minor was with Wills. After the officers questioned the minor again, he admitted his involvement in the theft and implicated Wills in the burglary. Although Wills denied involvement in the burglary, the officers arrested him.

The State filed a trial information charging Wills with second-degree burglary. The State later amended the information to include two additional charges of burglary in the third degree and using a juvenile to commit an indictable offense.

The jury returned a verdict finding Wills guilty of the crimes of burglary in the second degree, burglary in the third degree, and using a juvenile to commit an indictable offense. Wills appeals his conviction for second-degree burglary claiming ineffective assistance of counsel.

II. Scope of Review.

Claims of ineffective assistance of counsel are derived from the Sixth Amendment of the United States Constitution. Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668, 684-86, 104 S.Ct. 2052, 2063-64, 80 L.Ed.2d 674, 691-93 (1984). Our review for a claim involving violations of the Constitution is de novo. State v. Fintel, 689 N.W.2d 95, 100 (Iowa 2004). We normally preserve ineffective-assistance-of-counsel claims for postconviction relief actions. State v. Carter, 602 N.W.2d 818, 820 (Iowa 1999). However, we will address such claims on direct...

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74 practice notes
  • State v. Marshall, No. 13–0739.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • June 30, 2016
    ...granted.II. Standard of Review. We review constitutional claims de novo. State v. Cox, 781 N.W.2d 757, 760 (Iowa 2010) ; State v. Wills, 696 N.W.2d 20, 22 (Iowa 2005). On a motion to suppress evidence obtained in violation of a defendant's constitutional rights, the defendant generally has ......
  • State v. Null, No. 11–1080.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • August 16, 2013
    ...record can be developed, “we will address such claims on direct appeal when the record is sufficient to permit a ruling.” State v. Wills, 696 N.W.2d 20, 22 (Iowa 2005).III. Ineffective Assistance. Null raises ineffective-assistance claims with regard to his plea colloquy and the withdrawal ......
  • State v. Brown, No. 17-0367
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • June 28, 2019
    ...206 (Iowa 2018). But, "we will address such claims on direct appeal when the record is sufficient to permit a ruling." State v. Wills , 696 N.W.2d 20, 22 (Iowa 2005). We review ineffective-assistance-of-counsel claims de novo. Schlitter , 881 N.W.2d at 388.III. Analysis.The United States Su......
  • State v. Warren, No. 19-0267
    • United States
    • Iowa Supreme Court
    • March 5, 2021
    ...unprofessional errors, the result of the proceeding would have been different." Brown , 930 N.W.2d at 855 (quoting State v. Wills , 696 N.W.2d 20, 22 (Iowa 2005) ). Accordingly, we must examine the merits of Warren's argument that she was subjected to an unconstitutional seizure to determin......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
74 cases
  • State v. Marshall, No. 13–0739.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • June 30, 2016
    ...granted.II. Standard of Review. We review constitutional claims de novo. State v. Cox, 781 N.W.2d 757, 760 (Iowa 2010) ; State v. Wills, 696 N.W.2d 20, 22 (Iowa 2005). On a motion to suppress evidence obtained in violation of a defendant's constitutional rights, the defendant generally has ......
  • State v. Null, No. 11–1080.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • August 16, 2013
    ...record can be developed, “we will address such claims on direct appeal when the record is sufficient to permit a ruling.” State v. Wills, 696 N.W.2d 20, 22 (Iowa 2005).III. Ineffective Assistance. Null raises ineffective-assistance claims with regard to his plea colloquy and the withdrawal ......
  • State v. Brown, No. 17-0367
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • June 28, 2019
    ...206 (Iowa 2018). But, "we will address such claims on direct appeal when the record is sufficient to permit a ruling." State v. Wills , 696 N.W.2d 20, 22 (Iowa 2005). We review ineffective-assistance-of-counsel claims de novo. Schlitter , 881 N.W.2d at 388.III. Analysis.The United States Su......
  • State v. Warren, No. 19-0267
    • United States
    • Iowa Supreme Court
    • March 5, 2021
    ...unprofessional errors, the result of the proceeding would have been different." Brown , 930 N.W.2d at 855 (quoting State v. Wills , 696 N.W.2d 20, 22 (Iowa 2005) ). Accordingly, we must examine the merits of Warren's argument that she was subjected to an unconstitutional seizure to determin......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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