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State v. Bauer

Court of Appeals of Iowa

March 8, 2017

STATE OF IOWA, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
CORY JAMES BAUER, Defendant-Appellant.

         Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Black Hawk County, James D. Coil, District Associate Judge.

         Cory Bauer appeals following convictions and sentences entered on four charges. AFFIRMED.

          Robert B. Brock II of the Law Office of Robert B. Brock II, P.C., Le Mars, for appellant.

          Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, and Kyle Hanson, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee State.

          Considered by Bower, P.J., McDonald, J., and Mahan, S.J. [*]

          MAHAN, Senior Judge.

         Following a bench trial on the minutes in these consolidated cases, Corey Bauer was found guilty of assault causing bodily injury, in violation of Iowa Code section 708.2(2) (2014); possession of marijuana, in violation of section 124.401(5); domestic abuse assault by strangulation, in violation of section 708.2A(2)(d); and domestic abuse assault causing injury, in violation of section 708.2A(2)(b). The district court made findings of fact that Bauer assaulted his mother-in-law causing bodily injury on July 5, 2014; possessed marijuana on July 9; and on July 8, caused bruises to his former wife's elbow and wrist and also strangled her to the point she was not able to breathe for a time.

         On December 15, the district court held a sentencing hearing on three cases against Bauer. The court sentenced Bauer to two 180-day jail terms with all but fourteen days suspended in case SRCR199535 (the assault causing bodily injury and possession charges). In case AGCR199536 (the domestic charges), the court sentenced him to two 365-day jail terms with all but ten days suspended. The sentences in both cases were to run concurrently to the sentence in a third case (not before us), SRCR197089, in which Bauer had pled guilty to possession of marijuana. The court continued a no-contact order between Bauer and the victims of the assaults but modified the order to permit Bauer to have contact with his child while supervised.

         On appeal, Bauer raises several issues that would be relevant had he pled guilty, [1] but because he was found guilty after a trial to the court, we do not address them. Bauer also asserts the district court did not allow him to address the court prior to sentencing, which is belied by the record.[2] Several other issues are mentioned in passing, which present nothing for this court to review. See State v. Louwrens, 792 N.W.2d 649, 650 n.1 (Iowa 2010) ("[P]assing reference to an issue, unsupported by authority or argument, is insufficient to raise the issue on appeal.").

         Bauer challenges the court assessing to him the cost of the court-appointed attorney's fees ($315 for appointed counsel on the serious misdemeanor and $615 on the aggravated misdemeanor). As we read the brief, Bauer asserts because the district court failed to make a specific finding that Bauer's income was at or below 125% of the poverty level, the court could not assess the costs of the attorney to him. We disagree.

         Bauer submitted a "financial affidavit/application for appointment of counsel, " stating he was unemployed and claiming no income or assets. The court found Bauer indigent and appointed counsel. Bauer is twenty-three years old, and nothing in this record establishes he is incapable of working. The record also reflects the availability of a payment plan, allowing Bauer the ability to make small payments rather than a large lump sum. See Iowa Code § 815.9(3) ("If a person is granted an appointed attorney, the person shall be required to reimburse the state for the total cost of legal assistance provided to the person pursuant to this section."). We find no abuse of the court's discretion in this regard.

         Bauer further contends the court erroneously ordered him to pay costs of a dismissed charge, a simple misdemeanor. Bauer has not sought discretionary review in this matter and has no appeal of right. See id. § 814.6(1)(a). In any event, Bauer agreed to pay the costs in exchange for the dismissal of the charge. We note the following colloquy:

PROSECUTOR: It's my understanding that Mr. Abbott [defense counsel] and I are going to stipulate that the substance was, in fact, marijuana. There was also a companion simple misdemeanor charge, Your Honor, for possession of drug paraphernalia, and the ...

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