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State v. Barker

Court of Appeals of Iowa

January 9, 2020

STATE OF IOWA, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
TREKEL MARQUIS BARKER, Defendant-Appellant.

          Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Woodbury County, Steven J. Andreasen, Judge.

         Trekel Barker appeals his convictions for robbery in the first degree, carrying a dangerous weapon, trafficking in stolen weapons, and theft in the fourth degree.

          Mark C. Smith, State Appellate Defender (until withdrawal), and Robert P. Ranschau, Assistant Appellate Defender, for appellant.

          Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, and Linda J. Hines, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee.

          Considered by Bower, C.J., and May and Greer, JJ.

          BOWER, CHIEF JUDGE.

         Trekel Barker appeals his convictions for robbery in the first degree, carrying a dangerous weapon, trafficking in stolen weapons, and theft in the fourth degree, in violation of Iowa Code sections 711.1, 711.2, 714.1, 714.2, 724.4, and 724.16A (2018). Because the court did not abuse its discretion in denying Barker's motion for mistrial, motion for new trial, and motion in arrest of judgment, and Barker's counsel did not provide ineffective assistance by not objecting to a jury instruction, we affirm.

         I. Background Facts & Proceedings

         On the afternoon of June 1, 2018, Barker texted a friend, Tyrese Griffin-Uken, asking if he had a lighter. They met at a church to exchange the lighter, then both went to Griffin-Uken's apartment because Barker asked for a drink of water.

         Griffin-Uken left the apartment for a short time to meet his mother in the parking lot, where she gave him $200. Griffin-Uken testified that when he returned to the apartment, Barker pointed a handgun at his face and told him to get up against the wall. Barker hit Griffin-Uken, telling him to shut up and get on the floor. Barker removed the gun's magazine to show Griffin-Uken the gun was loaded, replaced the magazine, and chambered a round. Barker took the $200 from Griffin-Uken, as well as a necklace and ring. Barker discarded the ring and threatened to kill Griffin-Uken and his family if he told anyone.[1]

         After Barker left, Griffin-Uken called the police and a family member. Responding officers were given a description of Barker's clothing and his name. The police located Barker at a nearby liquor store and found the necklace, $192.50, and a handgun on him.[2]

         Police obtained a search warrant for Barker's vehicle, where they found a leather holster that fit the gun Barker had been carrying. The handgun Barker carried had been reported stolen on May 30. Barker claimed to have purchased the gun from a friend on May 30 and did not know or care if the gun was stolen.

         Barker was charged with robbery, carrying a dangerous weapon, trafficking in stolen weapons, and theft in the third degree.[3] In September, a jury found Barker guilty of robbery in the first degree, carrying a dangerous weapon, trafficking in stolen weapons, and theft in the fourth degree. Barker filed motions for a mistrial (based on the admission of testimony ...


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