Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

State v. Paulson

Court of Appeals of Iowa

December 19, 2018

STATE OF IOWA, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
CLAY THOMAS PAULSON, Defendant-Appellant.

          Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Boone County, Steven J. Oeth, Judge.

         Clay Thomas Paulson appeals his convictions for possession of a controlled substance, a tax stamp violation, and possession of a prescription drug without a prescription. AFFIRMED.

          Jesse A. Macro Jr. of Macro & Kozlowski, LLP, West Des Moines, for appellant.

          Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, and Tyler J. Buller, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee.

          Considered by Vogel, P.J., and Vaitheswaran and McDonald, JJ.

          VAITHESWARAN, JUDGE.

         Boone police officers stopped a vehicle they suspected of being stolen. The driver fled the scene, leaving a man in the backseat and Clay Thomas Paulson in the front passenger seat. The vehicle was impounded and inventoried. Officers seized a black backpack covered with white stars from the floorboard where Paulson had been sitting. The backpack contained drugs.

         The State charged Paulson with possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver, a tax stamp violation, and possession of a prescription drug without a prescription. See Iowa Code §§ 124.401(1)(c)(7); 453B.12; 453B.3, 453B.1; 155A.21 (2016). A jury found him guilty as charged.

         On appeal, Paulson contends (1) the evidence was insufficient to support the findings of guilt and (2) the district court erred in admitting hearsay statements.

         I. Sufficiency of the Evidence

         The jury was instructed the State would have to prove Paulson "knowingly possessed" a controlled substance, taxable substance, and prescription substance. Paulson contends the State failed to prove this element.

         The State's case hinged on establishing constructive possession of the backpack, which was defined for the jury as follows:

A person who, although not an actual possession, has both the power and the intention at a given time to exercise dominion or control over a thing, either directly or through another person or persons, is in constructive possession of it. A person's mere presence at a place where a thing is found or proximity to the thing is not enough to support a conclusion that the person possessed the thing.

         Paulson does not seriously dispute the fact that the backpack was found on the floorboard of the front passenger seat. He focuses on the absence of "physical evidence that linked [him] to the backpack and the items located in it." He acknowledges a woman who occupied the vehicle on the night before the stop identified the backpack as his. But he minimizes her testimony on the ground that she did not ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.