from the Iowa District Court for Woodbury County, John D.
Saul appeals the summary disposition of his application for
Zachary S. Hindman of Mayne, Hindman, Daane & Parry,
Sioux City (until withdrawal), and then Priscilla E. Forsyth,
Sioux City, for appellant.
J. Saul, Leavenworth, Kansas, pro se.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Sharon K. Hall, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee State.
Considered by Mullins, P.J., Bower, J., and Carr, S.J.
MULLINS, PRESIDING JUDGE.
August 2015, Jeremy Saul pled guilty to charges of felon in
possession of a firearm and possession of a controlled
substance. Judgment and sentence were entered the same day.
In October, he was charged with felon in possession of a
firearm, additional drug charges, and carrying a dangerous
weapon. In December, Saul was charged in federal court with
possession of a firearm by a felon in relation to the acts
that gave rise to the charges filed by the State in October.
The State later dismissed its charges.
January 2016, Saul filed an application for postconviction
relief, raising various claims related to the August 2015
plea. The State moved for summary disposition pursuant to
Iowa Code section 822.6 (2016). Saul filed a supplemental
application, in which he argued his trial counsel rendered
ineffective assistance in failing to (1) inform him of
effects his guilty plea in a state criminal matter would have
on sentencing in a federal criminal case and (2) file a
motion to suppress evidence. The State responded with a
supplemental motion for summary disposition. The court
granted the State's motion for summary disposition as to
appeals. He claims the supreme court's ruling "that
counsel has an obligation to inform his or her client of all
the adverse immigration consequences that counsel would
uncover," Diaz v. State, 896 N.W.2d 723, 732
(Iowa 2017); see also Padilla v. Kentucky, 559 U.S.
356 (2010), should "be expanded to require that all
criminal defense attorneys must advise all criminal
defendants . . . of all certain and possible adverse
collateral consequences of a guilty plea and
conviction," namely that counsel should be required to
advise a conviction could result in more severe punishment
for future crimes.
decline Saul's request to expand Diaz beyond its
express terms and require that all defense attorneys advise
criminal defendants that pleading guilty could have an effect
on punishment for future crimes. A criminal defendant is not
constitutionally entitled to a warning
that if he is convicted, and sentenced, and after serving his
time goes back to committing crimes, the fact of his having
been convicted may expose him to a more severe punishment for
his future crime than if it were a first offense. The warning
is needless; everyone knows that second and subsequent
offenders tend to be punished more heavily than first
offenders. The warning is also premature. It is about a
contingency that may not occur. It could even be viewed as an
invitation to recidivism: "don't plead guilty, if
you're planning to commit future crimes, because your
conviction of this offense might be used to increase your
punishment for future offenses."
By the same token . . ., defense counsel does not violate his
constitutional duty of minimally adequate representation when
he fails to warn the defendant that one possible consequence
of a guilty plea is a more severe sentence for a future
Lewis v. United States, 902 F.2d 576, 577 (7th Cir.
1990) (citations omitted); seealso Dillon v.
State, No. 12-1200, 2013 WL 4011062, at *2 (Iowa Ct.
App. Aug. 7, 2013) (noting, despite Padilla, that
the "effect a plea might have on future criminal
activity or a conviction" "need not be pointed out
by the court or counsel"). We agree with the district
court that counsel did not breach an essential duty and the
State was therefore entitled to judgment as a matter of law.
See Iowa Code § 822.6; State v.
McNeal, 897 N.W.2d 697, 703 (Iowa 2017) (noting we
"may consider either the prejudice prong or breach of
duty first, and failure to find either one will ...