from the Iowa District Court for Des Moines County, Mary Ann
Poland appeals the judgment and sentence imposed on his
convictions for first-degree kidnapping, second-degree
kidnapping, and willful injury. CONVICTIONS AFFIRMED,
SENTENCE VACATED IN PART, AND REMANDED.
C. Smith, State Appellate Defender, and Brenda J. Gohr,
Assistant Appellate Defender, for appellant.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Tyler J. Buller, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee.
by Vogel, P.J., and Doyle and Bower, JJ.
convicted Dakota Poland of first-degree kidnapping,
second-degree kidnapping, and willful injury. On appeal,
Poland challenges the sufficiency of the evidence supporting
his kidnapping convictions. He also contends the sentence
imposed on his first-degree-kidnapping conviction is
unconstitutional as applied to him. Finally, Poland argues
the district court erred in assessing court costs to him
without making a determination of his ability to pay.
Background Facts and Proceedings.
events giving rise to Poland's convictions occurred on
March 10, 2016, at the home where Poland lived with his
parents and three younger sisters. Poland, then twenty years
old, was dating L.R., who was sixteen years old. L.R. had
been staying at the home for approximately one week but
decided to leave because Poland was drinking vodka. L.R. did
not like being around Poland when he was drinking alcohol
because "it always turned out bad," and she had
told Poland that if he continued to drink, she would leave
grabbed her purse with her belongings from Poland's
second-floor bedroom and was walking down the stairs when
Poland emerged from the kitchen, blocking the exit, and told
L.R. to go back upstairs. When L.R. did not comply, Poland
punched her in the face and put out a cigarette on her back.
Poland grabbed L.R. by the arm and dragged her to the stairs.
He then grabbed her hair and tried to drag her up the stairs
while punching her. At one point, Poland stomped on her head.
He also hit her over the head with a wall decoration. When
Poland threatened to kill her if she did not go to his
bedroom, L.R. relented.
L.R. reached the bedroom, Poland pushed her to the floor,
secured the door with a chain lock, and barricaded it shut
with a stick. While in the bedroom, Poland strangled L.R. and
punched her about the head and face. He bit her on both of
her hands, her right cheek, the bridge of her nose, and her
leg. Poland struck her on the back with two different
skateboards. He also punched her in the head while holding a
glass ashtray in his hand. After forcing L.R. to her knees,
he struck her on the back of her head and back approximately
five times with what L.R. described as a "homemade
the assault in the bedroom, Poland forced L.R. to the
basement where he ordered her shower. When L.R. went into the
shower clothed, Poland called her "stupid," told
her to get out, and ripped off her shirt and bra. L.R.
removed her pants and got back in the shower, which is when
Poland began hitting her with a broom stick. After Poland
ordered L.R. out of the shower, he hit her with the broom,
causing her to lose her balance and fall into a pit in the
floor where the shower drained. While in the basement, Poland
also hit L.R.'s legs with a pool cue, telling her that he
was going to break her kneecaps.
L.R. fell in the shower drain, Poland's mother intervened
to stop the assault. L.R. dressed, and Poland's father
drove her to the hospital. The emergency-room physician who
treated L.R. found her visit memorable due to "[t]he
degree to which she was beaten," with "multiple
contusions, abrasions, bites, burns all over her body."
State charged Poland with first-degree kidnapping,
second-degree kidnapping, and willful injury. Following
trial, a jury found Poland guilty as charged. The district
court sentenced Poland to life in prison for the first-degree
kidnapping conviction and twenty-five years in prison on the
second-degree kidnapping conviction, ordering the sentences
to be served concurrently. The court did not impose a
sentence on the willful-injury conviction because it merged
with Poland's first-degree-kidnapping conviction. The
court ordered Poland to pay court costs but found he is not
capable of paying court-appointed attorney fees because of
the length of his sentence. Poland appealed.
Sufficiency of the Evidence.
challenges the sufficiency of the evidence supporting his
kidnapping convictions. Iowa Code section 710.1 (2016)
provides the following definition of the crime:
A person commits kidnapping when the person either confines a
person or removes a person from one place to another, knowing
that the person who confines or removes the other person has
neither the authority nor the consent of the other to do so;
provided, that to constitute ...