from the Iowa District Court for Des Moines County, William
L. Dowell (judgment) and Mary Ann Brown (amended judgment),
Dominique Bullock appeals from an order entered on his motion
to correct illegal sentences.
C. Smith, State Appellate Defender, and Stephan J. Japuntich,
Assistant Appellate Defender, for appellant.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Kyle Hanson, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee.
Considered by Danilson, C.J., McDonald, J., and Scott, S.J.
DANILSON, Chief Judge.
Dominique Bullock appeals from a district court order entered
on his motion to correct illegal sentences. The supreme court
granted his motion for delayed appeal and transferred the
case to this court. Bullock contends the district court erred
in assessing him court costs and attorney fees without making
a determination of his reasonable ability to pay and argues
any delay in raising the issue is attributable to ineffective
assistance of counsel. This claim must first be made to the
district court. We dismiss the appeal.
2003, Bullock was convicted of first-degree kidnapping for an
offense committed in 1999 when Bullock was sixteen years
He was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole on
the kidnapping conviction. Bullock was sentenced to two
consecutive prison terms not to exceed twenty-five years on
the burglary and sexual-abuse convictions, with a mandatory
minimum on the sexual-abuse charge.
kidnapping conviction was affirmed on direct appeal. See
State v. Bullock, No. 03-1444, 2004 WL 2173339, at *1
(Iowa Ct. App. Sept. 29, 2004). In 2011, based on Graham
v. Florida, 560 U.S. 48, 74-75 (2010), and Bonilla
v. State, 791 N.W.2d 697, 701 (Iowa 2010), Bullock was
resentenced to life with the possibility of parole.
Provisions of his sentence regarding restitution were left
2014, Bullock filed a motion to correct illegal sentence,
seeking resentencing with no mandatory minimum based on
State v. Lyle, 854 N.W.2d 378, 381 (Iowa 2014)
(holding "juvenile offenders cannot be mandatorily
sentenced under a mandatory minimum sentencing scheme").
The district court conducted a resentencing hearing on the
motion, heard evidence, and ultimately entered an "order
reaffirming previous sentence" after engaging in the
analysis required by Lyle. Bullock's appeal of the
resentencing on the sexual-abuse and burglary charges was
decided by this court on March 23, 2016. See State v.
Bullock, 2016 WL 1130311, at *4. There, our court
stated: "To the extent Bullock claims he does not have
the reasonable ability to pay the restitution ordered in
2002, he can petition the district court for a hearing to
review the plan of restitution or the restitution plan of
payment pursuant to Iowa Code section 910.7."
was allowed a delayed appeal in this case regarding his
kidnapping conviction due to counsel's failure to file a
timely notice of appeal despite Bullock's timely request.
appeal, Bullock does not challenge district court's order
resentencing him to life in prison with possibility of
parole. Rather, he challenges the restitution portions of his
sentence previously entered, which were left undisturbed in
both the 2011 and 2014 resentencing proceedings. He contends
court costs and mandatory attorney fees were assessed to him
"without the constitutionally mandated determination of
his reasonable ability to pay." Bullock asserts,
"This matter should be reversed and remanded for a
hearing to determine Bullock's reasonable ability to pay
the obligations in question."
State responds in part by contesting Bullock's right to
raise this issue here. The State argues Bullock may only
challenge the district court's order reaffirming the
prior sentence through certiorari or discretionary review.
See State v. Propps, 897 N.W.2d 91, 97 (Iowa 2017)
(noting there is no right to appeal a denial of a motion to
correct illegal sentence and that "appeals from a motion
to correct an illegal sentence are most appropriately
fashioned" as a petition for writ of certiorari). The
State further argues that because Bullock is not challenging
the substance of the 2014 order but is rather disputing the
amount of restitution-an issue unaddressed in the district
court's 2014 order-"[t]he proper mechanism to
contest the amount of restitution is a motion pursuant to
disagree slightly with the State's characterization of
Bullock's request to this court. Bullock is not directly
challenging the amount of the restitution ordered. Rather, he
is asserting there has been no hearing or finding of
"his reasonable ability to pay the obligations emanating
from his conviction." Bullock correctly asserts that a
finding of an ability to pay is "constitutionally