from the Iowa District Court for Black Hawk County, Jeffrey
L. Harris, District Associate Judge.
appeals claiming district court relied on improper
information in sentencing. AFFIRMED.
J. Thomas, Mason City, for appellant.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Kevin R. Cmelik and Zachary
C. Miller, Assistant Attorneys General, for appellee.
Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Mullins, JJ.
Hendrickson pled guilty to operating while intoxicated (OWI).
The court sentenced him to 180 days in the county jail, with
all but twenty days suspended, plus a fine and other
applicable provisions. Hendrickson appeals, arguing the
district court abused its discretion and considered improper
factors when sentencing him. Specifically, he claims (1) the
court improperly considered an allegation of the use of bath
salts in the minutes of testimony, (2) his
counsel provided ineffective assistance in failing to deny
the admission of his use of bath salts, (3) the statements in
the minutes of testimony attributed to his use of bath salts
did not meet the requirements for an admission exception, (4)
the court improperly considered unproven juvenile offenses,
and (5) the court relied on prior offenses referenced in his
State charged Hendrickson by trial information with OWI,
alleging one or more of three ways in which he committed the
offense: he operated a motor vehicle while (1) "under
the influence of an alcoholic beverage or other drug or a
combination of such substances, " (2) "having an
alcohol concentration of .08 or more, " or (3) "any
amount of a controlled substance is present in the person, as
measured in the person's blood or urine." Iowa Code
§ 321J.2(1) (2016). He pled guilty to OWI in writing and
agreed "the Court may . . . rely upon th[e] minutes [of
testimony] as a factual basis for this guilty plea." The
transcript of the record at sentencing shows the court
accepted the written guilty plea and Hendrickson did nothing
to try to limit his plea to alcoholic beverages or any
particular substances as the source of his intoxication, and
the court did nothing to indicate that, for the factual basis
for the plea, it was limiting its consideration of the
evidence to only alcohol or other specified substances.
minutes of testimony recited facts upon which the court could
have relied to establish the factual basis for the plea under
any of the alleged alternatives. See State v.
Finney, 834 N.W.2d 46, 62 (Iowa 2013). The lab results
showed Hendrickson's blood alcohol level was 0.198 and he
was positive for THC. The district court considered
Hendrickson's admission to law enforcement and hospital
personnel that he consumed alcohol and used bath salts prior
to the accident, which had resulted in law enforcement
intervention and Hendrickson's eventual hospitalization
and arrest. Hendrickson also made statements both in the
ambulance and at the hospital concerning his long-term use of
bath salts. In its sentencing order, the district court
indicated it considered those facts and the contents of his
substance-abuse evaluation, indicating marijuana use since he
was thirteen years old, alcohol use since he was seventeen,
and mental-health issues.
sentencing court is required to consider "all pertinent
information" and to determine a sentence that "will
provide maximum opportunity for the rehabilitation of the
defendant, and for the protection of the community."
Iowa Code § 901.5. The rules of evidence-except for
those on privilege-do not apply to sentencing proceedings.
Iowa Ct. R. 5.1101(c)(4). The substance-abuse evaluation was
required by statute. Iowa Code § 321J.2(7)(a). Here, the
contents of the substance-abuse evaluation report were
prepared for the purpose of showing the history and pattern
of substance abuse, and to determine recommended treatment.
From our reading of the sentencing order, the court
considered pertinent information, not as criminal history
information or allegations of other crimes, but as indicative
of Hendrickson's need for rehabilitation based on his
long-term substance abuse. The court then structured a
sentence designed to provide what the court considered as
maximum opportunity for rehabilitation and for protection of
the community. We find no abuse of discretion and no error in
the court's consideration of the statutorily required
on the foregoing, we also determine that counsel's
conduct did not fall below professional standards by failing
to object to the court's consideration of the facts
admitted by Hendrickson, those fairly considered by the court
in finding a factual basis for the plea, and those contained
in the required substance-abuse evaluation. See State v.
Thorndike, 860 N.W.2d 316, 320 (Iowa 2015) (requiring
that, in order to succeed on a claim of ineffective
assistance of counsel, a defendant must show "by a
preponderance of the evidence: '(1) his trial counsel
failed to perform an essential duty, and (2) this failure
resulted in prejudice'"); accord Strickland v.
Washington, 466 U.S. 668, 687 (1984).