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Case No. 18-0098

State of Iowa
Larry Deandre Ratliff Jr


State of Iowa


Larry Deandre Ratliff Jr

Attorney for the Appellee

Kyle Hanson, Assistant Attorney General

Attorney for the Appellant

Theresa R. Wilson, Assistant Appellate Defender

Court of Appeals

Court of Appeals Opinion

Opinion Number:
Date Published:
May 15, 2019

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, William P. Kelly, Judge.  AFFIRMED IN PART, REVERSED IN PART, AND REMANDED.  Considered by Vogel, C.J., and Doyle and Mullins, JJ.  Opinion by Mullins, J. (18 pages)

            On appeal, Larry Ratliff Jr. challenges the sufficiency of the evidence supporting his convictions of first-degree murder, willful injury causing serious injury, and assault with intent to inflict serious injury.  Ratliff also asserts his trial counsel provided ineffective assistance by failing to object to faulty jury instructions.  Ratliff further contends the district court abused its discretion in admitting cumulative and unduly prejudicial photographs into evidence.  OPINION HOLDS: We find the jury’s verdicts for murder in the first degree and willful injury causing serious injury are supported by substantial evidence and therefore affirm the judgments and sentences of the district court for those offenses.  We find the State failed to establish sufficient evidence for assault with intent to inflict serious injury.  Accordingly, we reverse the judgment and sentence for that offense and remand for dismissal of the charge.  We find Ratliff’s trial counsel was not ineffective and the court did not abuse its discretion in admitting photographs showing Ratliff holding the murder weapon.

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