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WILLIAMS v. STATE

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Court of Appeals of Indiana.

Antoni WILLIAMS, Appellant-Defendant, v. STATE of Indiana, Appellee-Plaintiff

Court of Appeals Case No. 22A-CR-500

Decided: September 20, 2022

Attorney for Appellant: Anna Onaitis Holden, Zionsville, Indiana Attorneys for Appellee: Theodore E. Rokita, Attorney General, Nicole D. Wiggins, Deputy Attorney General, Matthew Strother, Certified Legal Intern, Indianapolis, Indiana

MEMORANDUM DECISION

Case Summary

[1] Antoni Williams appeals his conviction, following a jury trial, for class A misdemeanor domestic battery. He contends that the State presented insufficient evidence to support his conviction. Finding the evidence sufficient, we affirm.

Facts and Procedural History

[2] On May 28, 2021, K.T. was spending the night with her boyfriend, Williams, at a friend's apartment. K.T. and Williams had been dating for almost a year. K.T. began looking through Williams's phone and saw information about another woman who purported to be pregnant with Williams's child. K.T. confronted Williams about the information. Williams was angry that K.T. had gone through his phone.

[3] Shortly thereafter, K.T. overheard Williams say that he was “going to put his hands on [her].” Tr. Vol. 2 at 207. She asked Williams's nephew, who was also present, to take her home. K.T. and Williams's nephew went to the parking lot, and K.T. got in the driver's-side back seat of the nephew's car. Williams, who had also exited the apartment, got into his own vehicle. As K.T. and Williams's nephew began to pull out of the parking lot, Williams pulled his car up near his nephew's car, and his nephew stopped and lowered the car window. Williams got out of his vehicle, walked up to his nephew's car, and opened the rear passenger's side door. He said, “Nah, this bitch got me f**ked up. I'm about to beat this bitch ass.” Id. at 208. Williams “yanked” K.T. out of the car by her hair and stomped on, punched, and kicked her. Id. at 209. K.T. grabbed a gun from Williams's waistband and fired as many as five shots at Williams. K.T. fled the scene, threw the gun in a field, and called 911.

[4] Officers responded to the scene. Williams admitted to a responding officer that he had “pulled” K.T. out of the car, that they had gotten into a “tussle,” and that he had hit her. Tr. Vol. 3 at 39. The officer took pictures of K.T.’s injuries, which included a bruise on the right side of her face.

[5] The State charged Williams with level 4 felony unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon, class A misdemeanor domestic battery, and class A misdemeanor battery resulting in bodily injury. Following a trial, the jury found him not guilty of possession of a firearm and battery resulting in bodily injury, but guilty of domestic battery. The court sentenced him to 365 days, with 221 days suspended to probation. This appeal ensued.

Discussion and Decision

[6] Williams challenges the sufficiency of the evidence supporting his conviction. In reviewing a sufficiency claim, we neither reweigh the evidence nor assess the credibility of witnesses. Cannon v. State, 142 N.E.3d 1039, 1042 (Ind. Ct. App. 2020). We consider only the evidence most favorable to the judgment and the reasonable inferences supporting it. Id. It is “not necessary that the evidence ‘overcome every reasonable hypothesis of innocence.’ ” Drane v. State, 867 N.E.2d 144, 147 (Ind. 2007) (quoting Moore v. State, 652 N.E.2d 53, 55 (Ind. 1995)). “We will affirm if there is substantial evidence of probative value such that a reasonable trier of fact could have concluded the defendant was guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.” Bailey v. State, 907 N.E.2d 1003, 1005 (Ind. 2009).

[7] To convict Williams of domestic battery as charged here, the State was required to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that he knowingly or intentionally touched a family or household member in a rude, insolent, or angry manner. Ind. Code § 35-42-2-1.3(a)(1).1 K.T. testified that Williams was upset with her for going through his phone. She overheard him saying that he was going to hurt her just before he yanked her out of the car by her hair and then stomped on, punched, and kicked her. Moreover, one of the responding officers testified that Williams admitted to him that he had pulled K.T. out of the vehicle and that he had hit her. The officer also personally observed a bruise on K.T.’s face.

[8] This evidence is more than sufficient to support the jury's conclusion that Williams knowingly or intentionally touched K.T. in a rude, insolent, or angry manner. His assertion to the contrary is simply a request for us to reweigh the evidence and reassess witness credibility, which we may not do. Williams's conviction for class A misdemeanor domestic battery is affirmed.

[9] Affirmed.

FOOTNOTES

1.   A “family or household member” is defined in pertinent part as a person who “is dating or has dated the other person,” or who “is or was engaged in a sexual relationship with the other person[.]” Ind. Code § 35-31.5-2-128(a)(2),-(3). Williams does not dispute that K.T. was a “family or household member.”

Crone, Judge.

May, J., and Weissmann, J., concur.

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