from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Robert A.
Hutchison, Judge. Michael Bauer appeals his conviction for
willful injury resulting in bodily injury.
Moines, for appellant.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Timothy M. Hau, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee.
Considered by Potterfield, P.J., Bower, J., and Mahan, S.J.
Bauer appeals his conviction for willful injury resulting in
bodily injury, contending the prosecutor's conduct during
cross-examination and closing argument violated his rights
under the Iowa Constitution and denied him a fair trial.
Bauer also claims the district court's conduct denied him
a fair trial. We affirm.
Background Facts and Proceedings
State filed an amended trial information charging Bauer with
willful injury as a habitual offender, in violation of Iowa
Code sections 708.4(1) and 902.8 (2015), following
allegations that he attacked Jerald Stewart in a bar restroom
after accusing Stewart of having sexual relations with
Rhiannon King, a woman Bauer had recently given $2000 and
purchased a car for and who had accompanied Stewart to the
bar that evening.
case proceeded to a jury trial. The State presented testimony
from Dr. Javaid Abbasi (who treated Stewart's
"serious injuries to his face and head" in the
emergency room at Iowa Methodist), Jason Ehlers (the Des
Moines police officer who responded to the incident), King,
and Stewart. Bauer elected to testify in his defense. Bauer
and Stewart gave conflicting accounts of what happened prior
to and during the altercation. Specifically, both Bauer and
Stewart testified the other made derogatory statements and
was the first to strike. There were no other witnesses; Bauer
"got off" Stewart when a third party entered the
jury convicted Bauer of the lesser-included offense of
willful injury causing bodily injury. Bauer filed a motion
for new trial, a motion in arrest of judgment, and a renewal
of his motion for judgment of acquittal. Following a hearing,
the district court entered a ruling denying Bauer's
motions. The district court entered judgment and sentence.
Bauer appeals. Facts specific to his claims on appeal will be
set forth below.
Standards of Review
review a district court's denial of a motion for new
trial based on claims of prosecutorial misconduct for abuse
of discretion. See State v. Greene, 592
N.W.2d 24, 30-31 (Iowa 1999). We review questions of the
admissibility of evidence for abuse of discretion. See
State v. Wilson, 878 N.W.2d 203, 210 (Iowa
2016). We also review a district court's denial of a
motion for new trial on the basis of judicial impartiality
for abuse of discretion. See State v.
Millsap, 704 N.W.2d 426, 432 (Iowa 2005). We review
challenges raising an alleged violation of constitutional
rights de novo. See State v. Cronkhite, 613
N.W.2d 664, 666 (Iowa 2000).
Prosecutorial Misconduct 
claims the prosecutor's conduct during cross-examination
and closing argument violated his rights under the Iowa
Constitution and denied him a fair trial. See Iowa
Const. art. I, §§ 9 ("The right of trial by
jury shall remain inviolate; . . . no person shall be
deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process
of law."); 10 ("In all criminal prosecutions, . . .
the accused shall have a right to a speedy and public trial
by an impartial jury; . . . to be confronted with the
witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for his
witnesses; and, to have the assistance of counsel.").
cross-examination, the prosecutor asked Bauer if having
access to particular documents or evidence in the case gave
Bauer the opportunity to tailor his testimony to the other
evidence. The following colloquy is relevant to Bauer's
STATE: Q. Now, before you testified today you've had,
through your attorney, in your possession or your
attorney's possession all the evidence the State has
against you. Would you agree?
DEFENSE COUNSEL: Objection, Your Honor. One, that invades the
attorney/client privilege. Two, it requires him to make a
legal determination that he would not be aware of. And,
three, it is argumentative.
COURT: Well, I think it does invade the attorney/client
privilege, Mr. Salami.
STATE: I'll rephrase it.
Q. You've had an opportunity to review the evidence we
had-that the State has, correct, before you testified today?
DEFENSE COUNSEL: Isn't that the same question, Your
COURT: Well, it's not. No, it isn't.
DEFENSE COUNSEL: I would object to the form.
COURT: On what basis?
DEFENSE COUNSEL: Not specific enough. And it asks to assume
something that there would be no evidence as to how much
he's reviewed or not reviewed.
COURT: I think it would be better if you asked him about