from the Iowa District Court for Scott County, Henry W.
Latham II, Judge.
defendant appeals his convictions for first-degree burglary
and domestic abuse assault. AFFIRMED.
C. Smith, State Appellate Defender, and Robert P. Ranschau,
Assistant Appellate Defender, for appellant.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Timothy M. Hau, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee.
Considered by Danilson, C.J., and Potterfield and Bower, JJ.
Morgan Jr. appeals his convictions for first-degree burglary
and domestic abuse assault-strangulation with injury. We find
there is substantial evidence to support the convictions and
Background Facts & Proceedings
and G.T. were previously in a relationship and were the
parents of a child. They did not live together. G.T. lived in
a two-story house with her friend, Allison Wuerzberger, and
Allison's mother, Debbie.
February 20, 2016, at about 5:20 a.m., Allison and Debbie
were awakened when they heard G.T. screaming. Debbie, who had
the bedroom below G.T.'s, stated she heard G.T. yelling,
"Kerry, stop, Kerry, stop. If you leave now, nobody is
going to call the police, just leave. You're hurting
me." Debbie heard Morgan say, "If I had my gun, you
would be dead right now." Allison peeked into G.T.'s
bedroom and saw Morgan standing close to G.T. There was
another man in the room, who seemed in a hurry to leave.
After Allison closed the door, she heard "four thuds,
which sounded like fists being-like someone was being
hit." Allison called 911. While talking to the
dispatcher, she noticed the glass window in the front door
was broken. Allison testified that as she was talking to the
dispatcher, Morgan came downstairs, offered her $100 to fix
the broken door-which she refused, then he went back to
officers arrived shortly thereafter, and Allison let them
into the house. When they entered G.T.'s bedroom, they
saw Morgan standing close to G.T., who was nude, crying, and
hysterical. They observed G.T. "had a lot of redness all
over her body, on her face, neck, arms, stomach, and her
breast. She also had an abrasion to her left breast, her
right eye, and both arms." G.T. told the officers Morgan
punched her multiple times, choked her with his hands so her
breathing was not normal, and put his fingers in her vagina.
G.T. made similar statements to an emergency medical
technician. Debbie later found a crowbar outside the home.
told officers he was upset because he discovered G.T. was
having sex with another man. He stated he yelled and screamed
at G.T. and she was scared of him. He admitted he threatened
to kill G.T. but stated he did not mean it. Morgan stated he
believed G.T. was engaged in sex work and advertising her
services online and he was frustrated because she had not
responded to his calls or texts for two weeks. Morgan also
stated he believed G.T. was buying drugs with money he gave
her for other purposes.
was charged with burglary in the first degree, in violation
of Iowa Code section 713.3(2) (2016), and domestic abuse
assault-strangulation with injury, in violation of section
708.2A(5). At Morgan's criminal trial, G.T. testified she
made plans with Morgan for him to visit her on the night of
February 20, 2016, but when he did not show up by 2:00 a.m.,
she asked another man, Justin,  to come over. G.T. stated she had
sexual relations with Justin and he caused the red marks on
her body. She testified Justin was in her room when Morgan
showed up and, despite this, she let Morgan into the house.
She stated Morgan yelled at her and pushed her into a chair