Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Villarreal v. State

Supreme Court of Wyoming

July 6, 2017

FRANK EUGENE VILLARREAL, Appellant (Defendant),
v.
THE STATE OF WYOMING, Appellee (Plaintiff).

         Appeal from the District Court of Carbon County The Honorable Wade E. Waldrip, Judge

          Representing Appellant Office of the State Public Defender: Diane M. Lozano, State Public Defender; Tina N. Olson, Chief Appellate Counsel; David E. Westling, Senior Assistant Appellate Counsel. Argument by Mr. Westling.

          Representing Appellee Peter K. Michael, Wyoming Attorney General; David L. Delicath, Deputy Attorney General; Christyne M. Martens, Senior Assistant Attorney General; Benjamin E. Fischer, Assistant Attorney General. Argument by Mr. Fischer.

          Before BURKE, C.J., and HILL, DAVIS, FOX, and KAUTZ, JJ.

          FOX, Justice.

         [¶1] Frank Villarreal challenges convictions for battery and aggravated assault and battery which stemmed from his punching and running over Robert Flores, who did not testify at trial. He claims that the trial court denied his Sixth Amendment right to confront witnesses against him when it allowed the emergency medical technician (EMT) and the physician who treated Mr. Flores to testify regarding several statements Mr. Flores made to them. He also argues that his battery conviction is not supported by sufficient evidence. We conclude that the Confrontation Clause was not violated because the statements made by Mr. Flores to his medical care providers were not testimonial; however, the battery conviction is not supported by sufficient evidence. We affirm Mr. Villarreal's aggravated assault and battery conviction, and reverse and remand for acquittal on the battery charge.

         ISSUES

         [¶2] We rephrase the issues as:

         1. Did the victim's failure to testify and the subsequent admission of statements he made to medical providers violate the Confrontation Clause?

         2. Did sufficient evidence support the battery conviction when there was no evidence regarding the victim's bodily injury?

         FACTS

         [¶3] Ian Campos and Robert Flores were driving from Denver to Rawlins in Mr. Campos' vehicle when Mr. Campos realized that he might run out of gas. He called Mr. Villarreal, who met them with gas at a truck stop in Sinclair. At the truck stop, Mr. Villarreal and Mr. Flores began to argue, and Mr. Villarreal punched Mr. Flores in the face. They decided to take their dispute south of Rawlins and fight.

         [¶4] Mr. Campos and Mr. Flores followed Mr. Villarreal's truck to Rawlins, where they left the interstate and headed south. Mr. Villarreal saw Mr. Flores jump out of Mr. Campos' car in his rearview mirror, turned his truck around, and drove into the sagebrush field where Mr. Flores had headed. Mr. Campos testified that he then left the area because he did not want to get into trouble. Mr. Villarreal drove after Mr. Flores and ran over his leg. A short time later, Mr. Villarreal drove Mr. Flores, who had a broken leg, to meet Mr. Campos. Mr. Campos put Mr. Flores, who was screaming in pain and saying "all kinds of stuff, " in his car and took him to the hospital. At the hospital, Mr. Flores was seen by Mr. Wheat, an EMT, and later, by Dr. Cesko. Dr. Cesko testified that when he saw Mr. Flores, approximately three hours after his admission, Mr. Flores was in "substantial pain" from his broken leg.

         [¶5] Mr. Flores refused to cooperate with the State during its trial preparation and did not testify at trial despite the State's efforts and the district court's order for detention and arrest warrant for him. A jury convicted Mr. Villarreal of eight statutory violations, two of which are the subject of this appeal: battery and aggravated assault and battery.

         DISCUSSION

         [¶6] Mr. Villarreal argues that the district court violated his Sixth Amendment right to confront witnesses at trial because Mr. Flores did not testify. Instead, the State established the identity of the victim, the identity of his assailant, and the injuries to Mr. Flores, partially through the testimony of medical personnel, who described some of the statements Mr. Flores made to them while they treated ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.