Thursday, May 24, 2012

Summary 2012 WY 67

Summary of Decision May 15, 2012

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Summaries are prepared by Law Librarians and are not official statements of the Wyoming Supreme Court


Docket Number: S 11 0168


Appeal from the District Court of Fremont County, Norman E. Young, Judge

Representing Appellant (Plaintiff/Defendant): David Hooper and Katherine A. Strike, of Hooper-Strike Law Offices, LLC, Lander, WY. Argument by Ms. Strike.

Representing Appellee (Plaintiff/Defendant): Gregory A. Phillips, Wyoming Attorney General; Terry L. Amitage, Deputy Attorney General; D. Michael Pauling, Senior Assistant Attorney General; Stewart M. Young, Faculty Director, Prosecution Assistance Program; Joshua B. Taylor, Student Director; and Gregory Asay, Student Intern. Argument by Mr. Asay.

Date of Decision: May 15, 2012

Facts: Alfred Lee Baldes (Baldes) appeals his conviction of two counts of third-degree sexual assault, contending insufficiency of the evidence and improper admission of W.R.E. 404(b) evidence.

Issues: Whether the evidence presented at trial was insufficient to sustain Alfred Baldes’ conviction, specifically there was insufficient evidence to prove that Mr. Baldes was in a position of authority and that sexual contact occurred, as required by W.S. § 6-2-303(a)(vi) and W.S. § 6-2-304(a)(iii), respectively. Whether the trial court erred and abused its discretion when, following an improper Gleason analysis, it allowed the introduction of W.R.E. 404(b) evidence, specifically the testimony of J.G., which was ultimately not offered for its proper purpose by the State.

Holdings: The Court concluded that ample evidence was presented to prove that Baldes was in a position of authority over and had sexual contact with the victim, K.S. Furthermore, the district court followed a proper Gleason analysis of the proffered Rule 404(b) evidence, and the evidence served the purpose for which it was admitted. Affirmed.

Justice Hill delivered the opinion for the court.

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