from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Robert B.
Brown appeals from the denial of his application for
Gagne of Gagne Law Office, Des Moines, for appellant.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Kelli A. Huser, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee State.
Considered by Vogel, P.J., Doyle, J., and Mahan, S.J.
Brown was convicted of second-degree robbery for taking $1277
from the victim while his codefendant threatened the victim.
On appeal, we found substantial evidence supported the
conviction. State v. Brown, No. 14-0055, 2015 WL
2393440, at *2 (Iowa Ct. App. May 20, 2015) (noting the
victim "reported Brown and Andrew Buchanan had robbed
her of $1277" and "stated a gun was held to her
head and one of the men threatened to kill her if she called
the police, " and citing the opinion regarding
Brown's codefendant, State v. Buchanan, No.
13-1999, 2015 WL 162028, at *2 (Iowa Ct. App. Jan. 14, 2015),
which stated "the evidence at trial shows [the victim]
told two officers responding to her call that Buchanan held a
gun to her head and said, 'This is a stickup, Bitch,
' while Brown took her money").
thereafter filed this application for postconviction relief
(PCR), contending, in part, trial counsel was ineffective in
failing to request a jury instruction defining theft. The
district court denied the application, and Brown now appeals.
an appeal from a denial of an application for postconviction
relief is reviewed for correction of errors at law."
Perez v. State, 816 N.W.2d 354, 356 (Iowa 2012)
(citation omitted). However, claims of a constitutional
nature, such as claims of ineffective assistance of counsel,
are reviewed de novo. Ledezma v. State, 626
N.W.2d 134, 141 (Iowa 2001).
To prevail on a claim of ineffective assistance of counsel,
the applicant must demonstrate both ineffective assistance
and prejudice. Both elements must be proven by a
preponderance of the evidence. However, both elements do not
always need to be addressed. If the claim lacks prejudice, it
can be decided on that ground alone without deciding whether
the attorney performed deficiently.
Id. at 142 (citations omitted). To establish
prejudice, the applicant must affirmatively prove "that
there is a reasonable probability that, but for counsel's
unprofessional errors, the result of the proceeding would
have been different." Lamasters v. State, 821
N.W.2d 856, 866 (Iowa 2012) (citation omitted).
was charged with first-degree robbery. At trial, the jury was
The State must prove all of the following elements of robbery
in the first degree as to defendant Daveone Rashad Brown:
(1) On or about the 28th day of January, 2013, the defendant
Daveone Rashad Brown, or someone he aided and abetted, had