from the Iowa District Court for Scott County, Joel W.
Banks appeals his sentence for delivery of heroin.
C. Smith, State Appellate Defender, (until withdrawal) and
Maria Ruhtenberg, Assistant Appellate Defender, for
Jeremiah Banks, Mt. Pleasant, pro se appellant.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Israel Kodiaga, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee.
Considered by Bower, C.J., and May and Greer, JJ.
Banks appeals his sentence from a conviction of delivery of
heroin. He claims the district court abused its discretion
during sentencing. We find the court did not abuse its
discretion and affirm.
Background Facts & Proceedings
Wal-Mart parking lot on the morning of October 22, 2017, Matt
Brown got out of a truck driven by Brice Bennett and got into
Banks's vehicle. The two vehicles then moved to a casino
parking lot, where surveillance cameras recorded both
vehicles. While in Banks's vehicle, Brown purchased
heroin from Banks. Brown returned to Bennett's vehicle,
and they travelled to a hotel where they used the heroin.
Bennett overdosed on heroin that day.
January 30, 2018, two criminal complaints for
controlled-substance violations were filed against Banks. On
March 12, a trial information charged Banks with delivery of
heroin. Following trial in May, a jury found Banks guilty of
delivery of less than 100 grams of heroin, in violation of
Iowa Code section 124.401(1)(c)(1) (2017), a class
sentencing hearing, Banks asked for his sentence to run
concurrently with his sentence imposed in a separate case.
The events leading to the other sentence occurred after those
underlying this case, but Banks had already been sentenced in
the latter before trial here. The State requested the
sentences run consecutively and alluded to the amount of
narcotics involved in the other case during its
recommendation. The court sentenced Banks to a term of ten
years' incarceration to run consecutively to his other
Standard of Review
sentence is within the statutory limits, we review a district
court's sentencing decision for an abuse of discretion.
State v. Seats, 865 N.W.2d 545, 552 (Iowa 2015).
"Thus, our task on appeal is not to second guess the
decision made by the district court, but to determine if it
was unreasonable or based on untenable grounds."
Id. at 553 (citation omitted). "In other words,