from the Iowa District Court for Scott County, Joel W.
appeals his convictions and sentence for one count of
indecent contact with a child and two counts of sexual abuse
in the third degree.
C. Smith, State Appellate Defender, and Bradley M. Bender,
Assistant Appellate Defender, for appellant.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Zachary Miller, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee.
Considered by Vogel, C.J., and Vaitheswaran and McDonald, JJ.
Reed appeals his convictions and sentence for one count of
indecent contact with a child and two counts of third-degree
sexual abuse. He asserts the jury's guilty verdicts were
not supported by sufficient evidence. Additionally, he raises
multiple ineffective-assistance-of-counsel claims. We find
sufficient evidence supports the verdicts and counsel was not
ineffective on one claim, and we preserve the remaining
ineffective-assistance-of-counsel claims for possible
Background Facts and Proceedings
22, 2017, L.H., thirteen years old, visited Bettendorf for a
wrestling camp. L.H. and three friends went to a pet store
where L.H. first encountered Reed. Reed walked by L.H. and
pinched the tip of L.H.'s penis over his clothes. L.H.
testified at first he thought it was an accident, but Reed
walked past L.H. again and rubbed the back of his hand
against L.H.'s buttock. Then Reed, for a third time,
walked past L.H. and pinched his penis again. L.H. told his
friends, and eventually the teenagers left the pet store.
Reed left the area, the teenagers went to a fast-food
restaurant next to the pet store, and L.H. went into the
bathroom. Reed soon entered the bathroom, approached L.H.,
and touched L.H.'s penis. L.H. rushed out of the bathroom
and reported the incident to an employee. The manager of the
restaurant confronted Reed in the bathroom, told him to
leave, and reported the incident to law enforcement. The
manager testified it appeared Reed had an erection.
27, a police officer stopped Reed after running his license
plate number and finding an outstanding warrant for a sex
offense. Reed consented to a search of his vehicle. The
officer discovered various items in the search, including
cartoon-themed bed sheets functioning as the driver's
seat cover, stuffed animals buckled up in the back seat, a
"kid's painting" in the rear window that was
visible from the outside, and a cartoon-themed backpack
filled with condoms, lotion, hand warmers, lubricant, hand
sanitizer, snacks, and other miscellaneous items.
was charged with two counts of sexual abuse in the third
degree and one count of indecent contact with a child. In a
November 10 motion in limine, Reed requested all items found
in his car be excluded, asserting such items were not
relevant. The district disagreed and allowed the evidence be
admitted. A trial was held from November 13 to 15, and the
jury returned guilty verdicts on all three counts. Reed
Standard of Review
review sufficiency-of-the-evidence claims for correction of
errors at law. We uphold a verdict if substantial evidence
supports it." State v. Quinn, 691 N.W.2d 403,
407 (Iowa 2005) (internal citations omitted). "Evidence
is substantial if it would convince a rational fact finder
that the defendant is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt."
State v. Biddle, 652 N.W.2d 191, 197 (Iowa 2002).
"We review the evidence in the light most favorable to
the State, including legitimate inferences and presumptions
that may fairly and reasonably be deduced from the record
addition, "[a] claim of ineffective assistance of
counsel requires a de novo review because the claim is
derived from the Sixth Amendment of the United States
Constitution." Bowman v. State, 710 N.W.2d 200,
204 (Iowa 2006). "If an
ineffective-assistance-of-counsel claim is raised on direct
appeal from the criminal proceedings, we may decide the
record is adequate to decide the claim or may choose to
preserve the claim for postconviction ...