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State v. Mallett

Court of Appeals of Iowa

September 13, 2017

STATE OF IOWA, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
RILEY AUGUSTUS MALLETT, Defendant-Appellant.

         Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Black Hawk County, George L. Stigler, Judge.

         Riley Augustus Mallett appeals from a verdict of guilty on a charge of first-degree robbery.

          Mark C. Smith, State Appellate Defender, and Nan Jennisch, Assistant Appellate Defender, for appellant.

          Riley A. Mallett, Anamosa, appellant pro se.

          Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, and Louis S. Sloven, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee.

          Vogel, P.J., Doyle, J., and Goodhue, S.J. [*]

          GOODHUE, Senior Judge.

         Riley Augustus Mallett appeals from a verdict of guilty on a charge of first-degree robbery.

         I. Background Facts and Proceedings

         The first-degree-robbery charge arose out of a robbery of the Greenwood Pharmacy in Waterloo on February 10, 2015. That night, two men entered the premises; both had masks on, and one had a hand gun. One of the men wore distinctive black puffy pants with white stars.

         The intruder with the unusual pants pointed a gun at pharmacist Wesley Pilkington and handed him a note demanding "all the Xanax and Promethazine [and] Codein[e] before I shoot this bitch up." The intruder orally repeated the demand of the note. Pilkington did as ordered, and then the intruder took random drugs off of the shelf. The two intruders fled through the back door into a residential area. A silent alarm had been tripped by one of the pharmacy employees, and police arrived within minutes.

         Mallett was tracked through the snow and found hiding in a treehouse clothed in shorts even though the weather was cold. A pair of black puffy pants with white stars matching the unusual attire of one of the gun-wielding intruders was found within fifteen feet of the treehouse. Pilkington was able to identify Mallett as the intruder with a gun who demanded the drugs. When interviewed, Mallett initially stated he had been jogging but later stated he was a lookout for the robbery. Cody Plummer was also arrested in another yard and admitted he had been in the store. In a post-arrest interview, Plummer accurately described what had happened in the robbery. After taking statements from Mallett and Plummer and investigating further, it was determined that K'Von Henderson, Dayton Nelson, and Myles Anderson were also involved in the robbery, by assisting in the planning and hiding the loot afterward.

         Nelson testified on behalf of the State at trial. He testified he was with Mallet, Plummer, Henderson, and Anderson a day before the robbery when Mallett came up with the idea to rob the pharmacy and all agreed to participate. The final plan was that Mallett and Plummer were to rob the pharmacy and Nelson and Henderson were to be getaway drivers.

         They gathered on the day of the robbery, and Nelson described the unique pants Mallett wore into the drug store. Anderson brought a handgun that they called "Billy, " and Nelson saw Anderson hand the gun to either Mallett or Plummer. Nelson observed the two emerging from the drug store and stopped the vehicle he was driving. Mallett opened the trunk of the car, placed the gun and duffle bag in the trunk, and signaled Nelson to leave. Nelson took the loot to his residence, and in a subsequent search of Nelson's residence, medication was found and identified as drugs taken from the pharmacy. The trial commenced on November 24, 2015, but a mistrial was declared, and the trial was reset and began on February 9, 2016. A verdict of guilty on the count of first-degree robbery was returned as to Mallet, Plummer, and Henderson.

         Mallett has submitted multiple claims on appeal that will be addressed as

         (1) claims where error has been preserved, (2) a claim of ...


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