JASON A. BROWN, Applicant-Appellant,
STATE OF IOWA, Respondent-Appellee.
from the Iowa District Court for Jackson County, Mark Smith,
Brown appeals the district court decision denying his
application for postconviction relief.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Darrel Mullins, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee State.
Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Potterfield and Bower,
Brown appeals the district court's decision denying his
application for postconviction relief from his conviction for
first-degree robbery. Finding Brown's trial counsel was
not ineffective, we affirm.
Background Facts and Proceedings
was convicted of first-degree robbery, in violation of Iowa
Code section 711.2 (2009). Brown and another man entered a
bank, threatened the teller with a gun, and stole more than
$45, 000. Fingerprints were left on the bank door and a bag
left behind by the men. These fingerprints were analyzed and
found to match Brown. Several witnesses were able to identify
Brown from the scene and from a gas station near the bank. A
green SUV with Wisconsin license plates was seen near the
bank stopped at the gas station, and two men matching the
appearance of the bank robbers exited the vehicle. Carisha
Turner, a friend of Brown's, was the registered owner of
a green SUV, and two witnesses positively identified the car.
Evidence recovered from Turner's house included documents
related to two large cash transactions for the purchase and
repair of a new car for Brown.
was identified as a suspect and located in Wisconsin, where
he was incarcerated on unrelated charges. A warrant for his
arrest was issued by Iowa authorities on September 15, 2010,
and served on September 16, 2010, by Wisconsin authorities.
Brown waived extradition to Iowa on October 12. On November
4, Brown posted bond on the Wisconsin charges and Wisconsin
authorities notified Iowa officials on November 20 that Brown
had waived extradition. Brown was taken to Iowa on December
claimed he was in Wisconsin at the time of the robbery, but
his fingerprints were found on the door to the bank and cell
phone records placed him in the area of the robbery. Brown
also claimed the car he paid $2300 for in cash was bought
from a friend on a payment plan. Cedric Dixon, who sold the
car to Brown, testified he never knew Brown before the
transaction, which occurred five days after the bank robbery,
and the car was not paid for in installments. Additionally,
Brown paid $1700 in cash to Midas for a transmission repair
for this same car.
was convicted, and appealed the conviction, which was
affirmed. State v. Brown, No. 11-1478, 2012 WL
3590173, at *2 (Iowa Ct. App. Aug. 22, 2012). Brown now
claims he received ineffective assistance of counsel as his
attorney failed to move to dismiss the trial information as
untimely filed. He also claims defense counsel was
ineffective for failing to challenge the introduction of
"known" fingerprints labeled with his name, without
a proper foundation and Brown further claims documents from
Verizon Wireless regarding his location were inadmissible
hearsay. The district court denied his application. Brown now
Standard of Review
of ineffective assistance of counsel are reviewed de novo.
Ledezma v. State, 626 N.W.2d 134, 141 (Iowa 2001).
"To prevail on a claim of ineffective assistance of
counsel, the [defendant] must demonstrate both ineffective
assistance and prejudice." Id. at 142. "If
the claim lacks prejudice, it can be decided on that ground
alone without deciding whether the attorney performed
deficiently." Id. Both elements must be proved
by a preponderance of the evidence. Jones v. State,
479 N.W.2d 265, 272 (Iowa 1991). Regarding prejudice,
"the proper standard requires the defendant to show that
there is a reasonable probability that, but for counsel's
unprofessional errors, the result of the proceeding would
have been different. A reasonable probability is a
probability sufficient to undermine confidence in the
outcome." Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S.
668, 669 (1984).