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Note: Disposition reports will be removed after sixty days. If you need more information about a case, you can contact the clerk of court or do a case search on Iowa Courts Online.

OWI Report (Jul 2017)

Friday, August 18, 2017

One Hundred Fifty-Seven DEFENDANTS SENTENCED FOR OWI THE MONTH OF July 2017

One hundred fifty-seven defendants were prosecuted for Operating While under the Influence (OWI) in Polk County Associate District Courts in the month of July 2017.

One hundred fifteen of those defendants were prosecuted for OWI First Offense. OWI First Offense is a Serious Misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum sentence of one year in county jail and a maximum fine of $1,250. The Court MUST impose a minimum sentence of two days in the county jail and a fine of $1,250, upon conviction. Blood alcohol levels are shown below in parentheses. DRE indicates that the conviction was based upon use of drugs other than just alcohol. REF means that the defendant refused the chemical test. A deferred judgment (non-conviction) is usually available to those defendants who test below .150 for an OWI First Offense. The State of Iowa has a legislatively set, presumptive level of intoxication of .08.

Those defendants appearing for sentencing for OWI First Offense in this reporting period were:  

Abbie Agan, (0.156); Pedro Arana, (0.141); Melvin Arevalo Callejas, (0.143); Jason Audas, (0.283); Maria Avila Galvez, (0.204); Katherine Ball, (0.106); Mark Bell, (DRE); Krista Bennett, (0.16); Nicole Benson, (0.187); Michelle Berst, (0.152); Nathaniel Birru, (REF); Kyle Bright, (0.183); Jeffrey Brooks, (0.106); Thomas Burk, (0.122); Christopher Burke, (0.197); Michael Byers, (0.106); Leonor Camacho Rodriguez, (REF); Nicholas Canney, (0.146); Aaron Canney, (0.187); Alexander Cantu, (0.231); Johnathan Chase, (0.182); Steven Chopard, (0.216); Jerimiah Coah, (DRE); Kole Critchlow, (0.142); Austin Damm, (0.141); Susan Danilson, (0.191); Quinton Dennis, (0.119); Dennis Diaz Rodas, (REF); Brandon Eagan Langford, (0.213); Brenden Eilander, (0.172); Juan Escobar Cruz, (0.101); Francis Fasanella, (0.201); Matthew Fiene, (0.116); Laurel Fisher, (0.093); Kristine Floyd, (0.27); Tynesha Franklin, (0.115); Jeffrey Gabby, (0.145); Andrew Gier, (0.094); Alaina Glenn, (0.155); Jessica Gomez, (0.205); Cindy Gonzales Ortiz, (0.129); Bobby Griffin, (0.143); Bobby Griffin, (.028/DRE); Raymond Guest, (0.14); Ricky Hardy, (0.124); David Hartnett, (DRE); Elizabeth Heller, (REF); David Herrera, (0.104); Tiara Herron, (0.101); Christopher High, (0.113); Brandon Howard, (REF); Jonathon Howell, (0.137); Eldon Hunsicker, (0.225); Martin Ibarra Quiroz, (0.165); Albert Iverson, (REF); Jasmine Johnson, (DRE); Elizabeth Jones, (0.141); Vannara Keo, (0.091); Mahendra Khadka, (0.296); Zachary Koester, (0.198); Brian Krakau, (REF); Robby Kristensen, (0.258); Kellina Kuebler, (0.159); Nellie Kuntzelman, (REF); Aaron Lafrenz, (REF); Meredith Lemon, (0.188); Teri Lewis, (REF); Taylor Linse, (REF); Marco Lopez Rubio, (0.216); Douglas Louis, (0.172); Nastassja Lund, (0.179); Brett Mccarthy, (0.205); Carlos Mccormack Padial, (0.133); Vickie McCuller, (REF); Caitlyn McLeod, (DRE); Kristina Meunier, (REF); Ryan Miner, (REF); Robert Montana, (0.097); Blaine Morlan, (DRE); Miguel Munguia, (REF); Clayton Murry, (0.113); Jeremy Naylor, (0.104); Douglas Negrete, (0.163); Kevin Nunez, (REF); Adira Ordaz, (0.177); Javier Ortiz Mejia, (0.156); Ryan Osweiler, (REF); Destiny Owens, (0.096); Juan Perez-roque, (REF); Tanner Radden, (0.107); Jeffrey Ragan, (0.149/DRE); Cole Ransom, (0.099); Kenneth Richards, (REF); Eric Rinard, (0.155); Nathan Rosman Bakehouse, (0.118); Eduardo Salamanca, (DRE); Jelal Samawi, (DRE); Jose Sanchez, (0.119); Francis Schulte, (0.17); Dontai Scott Burdick, (REF); Melinda Seeman, (0.116); Lakpa Sherpa, (0.144); Chelsea Smith, (0.131); Evelyn Stewart, (.160/DRE); Trevor Sutton, (0.212); Monae Thomas, (0.122); Gary Thomas, (REF); Benjamin Tiefenthaler, (0.271); Christina Towey, (0.175); Darcy Valline, (0.164); Benjamin Vazquez Angeles, (0.156); Jordan Waters, (0.293); Eric Winkel, (0.262); Ann York, (0.298); Sterling Young, (0.136).

Of those defendants sentenced for OWI First Offense this report, thirty-eight had a test of .160 (twice the legal limit) or greater. The low chemical test among the group was .091 and the high test was .298 (more than THREE times the legal limit). Eight defendants were prosecuted based upon their use of drugs other than just alcohol (denoted by “DRE”) and twenty-one refused chemical testing (denoted by “REF”).

Thirty-five defendants appeared for sentencing for OWI Second Offense. OWI Second Offense is an Aggravated Misdemeanor punishable by up to two years in prison and a fine of up to $6,250. The Court MUST impose a minimum sentence of seven days in county jail and a minimum fine of $1,875, upon conviction of OWI Second Offense.

Those defendants appearing for sentencing for OWI Second Offense in this reporting period were:

Rylee Aldrich, (0.173); Briar Alford, (REF); Matthew Althaus, (0.095); Brandon Blaine, (0.209); Craig Breja, (0.17); Lindsay Carey, (0.179); Christopher Fields, (0.174); Howard Fleetwood, (0.099); Joseph Fletcher, (DRE); Richard Floyd, (0.167/DRE); Tha Gay, (0.242); Sahji Gbadyu, (0.248); Jason Grady, (REF); Danielle Haas, (0.168); Thomas Hayes, (REF); Cory Heagle, (0.21); Scott Heisler, (0.254); Andrew Henricksen, (0.131); Adam Knode, (0.215); Matthew Martin, (0.11); Dau Mayor, (0.172); Abdullah Mohamed, (REF); Daeante Neely, (REF); Adolfo Orozco, (0.144); Todd Reynolds, (0.125); Ikunda Sawaki, (0.255); Lauren Schulte, (0.261); Matthew Stanley, (REF); Mike Stanley, (0.082); Glenda Ubben, (0.164); Alison Vandermark, (0.127); Alexis Vestal, (0.178); Nageb Wchala Gomo, (REF); Rickey Wilson, (REF); William Woods, (0.25).

Of those defendants sentenced for OWI Second Offense who took a chemical test, those tests ranged from a low of .082 to a high of .261 (more than THREE times the legal limit). Seven of these defendants refused the chemical test.

There were four defendants sentenced this reporting period for OWI Third Offense.  OWI Third Offense is a Class D felony, punishable by up to five years in prison and by a fine of up to $9,375. The Court MUST sentence a defendant convicted of OWI Third Offense to a minimum of thirty days in county jail and a minimum fine of $3,125. The defendants appearing for sentencing for OWI Third Offense in this reporting period were: 

Lucas Campbell, (REF); Juan Cerda, (REF); David Goldsberry, (REF); Terry Hambrick, (REF); Alexander Jones, (0.127); Maclovio Lopez, (REF); Richard Newman, (REF).

These cases were prosecuted by attorneys assigned to the Intake and Screening Bureau of Polk County Attorney John Sarcone’s Office. For the month of July 2017, the attorneys directly responsible for handling this challenging, fast-paced and high volume docket were: Maurice Curry, Kailyn Heston, and Jordan Roling, and the support staff responsible for assisting were: Megan Carter, Melanie Lumley, Chelsey Wilson, and Erica Zimmerman.

Terry Rote Sentencing

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Rote.PNGOn August 15, 2017, Terri Lynn Rote was sentenced following her guilty plea to Election Misconduct in the First Degree, a Class D Felony. Rote was charged after she was caught voting twice in the 2016 general election.

Due to the serious nature of the offense, the State resisted the defendant's request for a deferred judgment. Over the State's resistance, Judge Robert Hanson granted the defendant a deferred judgment, allowing her conviction to be expunged following successful completion of her term of probation. As a requirement of probation, the defendant has been ordered to obtain a mental health evaluation and follow through with all recommended treatment.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant Polk County Attorney Kevin Bell.

Felony Case Summary (August 2017)

Friday, August 4, 2017

On August 1, 2017, Stephanie Hilgenberg was sentenced for the crime of Possession of a Controlled Substance With Intent to Deliver, a Class C felony, in case number FE299298.  She was sentenced to a maximum indeterminate term of incarceration of ten (10) years. This defendant was prosecuted by the Polk County Attorney’s Office Drug and Gang Bureau.

On August 3, 2017, Adam Borisenko was sentenced for the crime of Possession of a Controlled Substance With Intent to Deliver, a Class B felony, in case number FE297009.  Judgment was deferred and he was placed on probation for two years. This defendant was prosecuted by the Polk County Attorney’s Office Drug and Gang Bureau.

On August 4, 2017, Nicole West appeared for probation violation hearing in FECR291480 and admitted she was out of touch with her probation officer.  She was allowed to keep her Deferred Judgement but sentenced to 30 days contempt to be served in jail.  She was continued on probation and required to comply with her mental health programming.

On August 4, 2017, Jarod Black appeared for a probation violation in FECR285009.  He stipulated he violated his probation by failing his placement.  He also stipulated the violations were sufficient to warrant revocation of his probation. His probation was revoked and he was sentenced to ten (10) hears probation on the charge of Burglary in the 2nd Degree.

On August 4, 2017, Valisha Henderson appeared for probation violation hearing in FECR283925. She admitted he violated his probation by being removed from her placement facility and missing appointments.  She also agreed the violations were sufficient to warrant revocation of her probation. She was sentenced to five (5) years in prison on the charge of Theft in the 2nd Degree.

On August 4, 2017, John Lutz appeared for a probation violation hearing in FECR276628.  He stipulated he violated his probation by using illegal substances . His probation was continued to allow him to comply with programming at the Salvation Army. He will remain in jail until there is space available at the facility where he shall comply with all programming and rules and continue to meet with his probation officer.

On August 4, 2017, Alexander Brunker appeared for a probation violation hearing in AGCR301105 and stipulated he violated his probation by being out of place at the Fort Des Moines Facility. He stipulated that the violations were sufficient to warrant revocation of his probation . The Court sentenced him to six (6) years in prison for Eluding and OWI.

On August 4, 2017, Rebecca Moredock appeared for a probation violation hearing in FECR253436.  She owes a significant amount of restitution to the victim of her crime.  She was continued on probation for an additional two (2) years to allow her to fulfill her restitution obligation.

On August 4, 2017, Gregory Mendenhall appeared for a probation violation hearing. He had met all of his obligations of probation except obtaining a GED.  The parties agreed obtaining a GED was not a realistic expectation for the Defendant. He was successfully discharged from probation.

On August 4, 2017, Nicholas Chappell appeared for a probation violation hearing in FECR289250 and SRCR296782. He admitted he missed appointments.  He was sentenced to 11 days contempt and released back to probation.

On August 4, 2017, William Headington appeared for a probation violation hearing in FECR282227. He stipulated he violated his probation by continuing to drink. Disposition will be heard August 21, 2017.

On August 10, 2017, Chanda Jenkins appeared for sentencing in FECR299402. She had previously pled guilty to the charges of Lascivious Acts with a Child, Enticing a Minor under 13 years, Neglect of a Dependent (2 counts)  and Lascivious Acts-Solicitation.  She was originally charged as a co-defendant with Thomas Harlow.  She and Harlow were residing together in an intimate domestic relationship.  Ms. Jenkin has a child, then 9 years old, T.W.  Together, she and Harlow had a 2 year old child P.H.  In August, 2016, the Defendant turned herself into the police, admitting she had, under duress, engaged in sexual abuse of her 9 year old child.  During the course of the following investigation, Des Moines police determined Harlow and Jenkins had engaged in sexual intercourse and oral sexual encounters with T.W. and in the presence of P.H.  Harlow claimed he had awoken to Jenkins engaged in a "blowjob" upon T.W. and Harlow encouraged her to continue and then repositioned the child so he could engage in intercourse with Jenkins.  Jenkins reported she was forced, by unspoken threats, to engage in all sexual contact with T.W. She described a history of verbal and physical abuse against her by Harlow which caused her to believe she would be assaulted if she failed to comply.  In her statement to the Court, Jenkins reported she did not know what else to do and felt she had to comply in order to make other abuse stop.

After turning herself in, Jenkins engaged in therapy.  She made herself available to testify against Harlow should it have been necessary (Harlow pled guilty and was sentenced to prison prior to Jenkins plea).  At sentencing, the Court considered the assessments conducted by the Department of Corrections, which determined she was a low risk to reoffend, her continued participation in therapy and her remorse as well as the horrific nature of the offenses. The Court granted her probation for a 5 year term, suspending her sentences of a total of 25 years.   She will be required to complete sex offender treatment.  She will be on supervision by the Department of Corrections the rest of her life as well as the sex offender registry.  She will be required to continue in counseling.  She will be precluded from having any contact with either child for at least 5 years.

On August 11, 2017, Larry Lenall Hall, III appeared for a probation violation hearing in FECR303399, FECR296907 and SRCR301326.  He stipulated he was out of place of assignment and failed to comply with programming and rules at the Ft. Des Moines Facility.  He was sentenced to 12 days contempt and ordered to remain in jail pending a return to the Fort Des Moines Facility.

On August 11, 2017, Bobby Lee Palmer, III appeared for a probation violation hearing in FECR299362; FECR299523 and SRCR289275. He stipulated he violated the terms of his probation and stipulated the violations were sufficient to warrant revocation of his probation.  He stipulated to being sentenced to prison. The Court sentenced him to prison for 5 years on the charge of Trafficking in Stolen Weapons, 1 years on the charge of Criminal Mischief 4th Degree and 1 year on the charge of Possession of a Controlled Substance.

On August 11, 2017, Stephen Meja appeared for a probation violation hearing in FECR273359. He stipulated e violated probation by using alcohol and drugs.  His probation was extended a year and he was placed at the Fort Des Moines Facility.  He will be required to have a substance abuse evaluation.  He is required to remain in jail until space is available for him.

On August 11, 2017, Emmitt Fraley appeared for a probation violation hearing in FECR295093; AGCR297584 and AGCR295611.  He admitted he committed a new offense of disorderly-fighting and being out of place of assignment.  The Defendant requested return placement to the Fort Des Moines Facility. This matter is set for a disposition hearing on September 11, 2017.  pending the hearing, the Department of Corrections will determine if he can be returned.

On August 11, 2017, Gerald Dennis Hope appeared for a probation violation hearing in FECR288662; AGCR295227 and SMAC362668.  The Defendant admitted he failed to attend required domestic abuse assault programming.  He was previously found in contempt on a separate violation and was sentenced to 30 days contempt which was held in abeyance allowing him to purge.  The Court ordered an additional 60 days contempt which is also held in abeyance allowing him to purge.  The hearing to show proof of compliance will be October 27, 2017.

On August 11, 2017,  Tracy Young appeared for probation violation hearing in FECR284950.  She admitted she violated the rules of her placement  Disposition is set for September 7, 2017

On August 11, 2017, Justin Shafer appeared for a probation violation hearing in FECR265541.  The Defendant stipulated he violated his probation by using illegal substances.  The Defendant remains out of custody pending disposition of the matter.  He is required to obtain a substance abuse evaluation and comply with any recommended treatment and meet with his probation officer as scheduled.  Disposition will be held August 30, 2017.

On August 11, 2017, Zachary Piper appeared for a probation violation hearing in FECR289421 and resolution of a new charge in FECR303515.  The Defendant stipulated he violated the terms of his probation and the violation was sufficient to warrant revocation of his probation.  He was sentenced to ten years in prison on two charges of Theft in the 2nd Degree. A  new charge in FECR303515 was dismissed but the Defendant stipulated he violated the no contact order in that matter and was sentenced to 60 days, credit for time served.

On August 22, 2017, Julie Jordan plead guilty and was sentenced for the crime of Possession of a Controlled Substance With Intent to Deliver, a Class C felony, in case number FE305513.  She was sentenced to a maximum indeterminate term of incarceration of ten (10) years, concurrent to her probation violation in SR292432. This defendant was prosecuted by the Polk County Attorney’s Office Drug and Gang Bureau.

On August 24, 2017, Cheyanne Russell was sentenced for the crimes of Possession of a Controlled Substance With Intent to Deliver, a Class C felony, and Failure to Possess a Tax Stamp, a Class D felony, in case number FE304232.  Judgment was deferred and she was placed on probation. This defendant was prosecuted by the Polk County Attorney’s Office Drug and Gang Bureau.

On August 24, 2017, Jeffrey Sorensen was sentenced for the crimes of Possession of a Controlled Substance With Intent to Deliver, a Class C felony, and Failure to Possess a Tax Stamp, a Class D felony, in case number FE304224.  He was sentenced to a term not to exceed ten years and five years, consecutive, but these sentences were suspended and he was placed on probation. This defendant was prosecuted by the Polk County Attorney’s Office Drug and Gang Bureau.

On August 29, 2017, Dawn Ibrahim plead guilty and was sentenced for the crime of Possession of a Controlled Substance With Intent to Deliver, a Class B felony, in case number FE303970.  She was sentenced to a maximum indeterminate term of incarceration of twenty-five (25) years with a mandatory one-third term she must serve prior to becoming eligible for parole. This sentence was ordered to be served concurrent to her probation violation in FE267078.  This defendant was prosecuted by the Polk County Attorney’s Office Drug and Gang Bureau.

On August 29, 2017, Xavier Morrow plead guilty to the crimes of Possession of a Controlled Substance With Intent to Deliver, a Class C felony, as a habitual offender, in case number FE300752, and Delivery of a Controlled Substance, a Class C felony, as a habitual offender, in case number FE300753.  He will be sentenced on October 17, 2017 and faces a maximum indeterminate term of incarceration of fifteen (15) years with a mandatory three year term he must serve prior to becoming eligible for parole in each case. This defendant was prosecuted by the Polk County Attorney’s Office Drug and Gang Bureau.

On August 29, 2017, Frederick McCuller II was sentenced for the crime of Possession of a Controlled Substance With Intent to Deliver, a Class C felony, and Failure to Possess a Tax Stamp, a Class D felony, in case number FE302834.  He was sentenced to a maximum indeterminate term of incarceration of ten (10) years and five (5) years, consecutive, but these sentences were suspended and he was granted a two year term of probation. This defendant was prosecuted by the Polk County Attorney’s Office Drug and Gang Bureau.

On August 29, 2017, Trenton Dahm plead guilty to the crimes of Possession of a Controlled Substance With Intent to Deliver, a Class C felony, and Failure to Possess a Tax Stamp, a Class D felony, in case number FE304670.  He will be sentenced on October 10, 2017 and faces a maximum indeterminate term of incarceration of ten (10) years and five (5) years. This defendant was prosecuted by the Polk County Attorney’s Office Drug and Gang Bureau.

Travis West Verdict

Monday, April 3, 2017

WestOn March 31, 2017 a Polk County Jury found Travis Raymond Wayne West guilty of the crimes of Involuntary Manslaughter, a Class D Felony, and Delivery of Heroin, a Class C Felony, for directly supplying 26 year old Bailey Brady of West Des Moines, Iowa with the heroin that caused her death.  Sentencing is currently set for May 18, 2017.  The defendant faces a maximum sentence of up to 5 years in prison on the Involuntary Manslaughter charge and a maximum sentence of up to 10 years in prison on the Heroin Delivery charge.   This case was prosecuted by the Polk County Attorney Office's Drug and Gang Bureau.  

Keyon Harrison Verdict

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Harrison.PNGOn October 10, 2016, Keyon Harrison was convicted of Felony Murder in the First Degree for his participation in the shooting death of Aaron McHenry on November 7, 2014 near the intersection of 26th Street and Hickman Lane in Des Moines.  Sentencing is set for November 22, 2016 before the Honorable Judge Paul Scott. This case was prosecuted by Shannon Archer and Jeff Noble with the Polk County Attorney's Office.  The lead investigator for the Des Moines Police Department was Brad Youngblut. 

Wadsworth Verdict

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Wadsworth.PNGOn August 30, 2016 Norman Charles Wadsworth was found guilty by a Polk County jury of Murder in the Second Degree for the stabbing death of Darlene Crook. The stabbing occurred in the afternoon on October 15, 2014 at an apartment building located at 700 East 5th Street in Des Moines, Iowa.

The defendant previously lived in the apartment building, which was managed by the victim, Ms. Crook. Examination of the body showed that the defendant stabbed the victim approximately 70 times. The defendant was originally charged with Murder in the First Degree, but was convicted of the lesser-included offense following testimony presented by the defense regarding the defendant's mental health.

The Honorable Judge Paul Scott presided over the trial.

Sentencing is currently set for October 20, 2016 at 9:00 a.m. in Courtroom 209A of the Polk County Courthouse.  The defendant is currently being held in the Polk County Jail pending sentencing in this case.

Polk County Sheriff: Don't Fall for Phone Scams

Thursday, August 18, 2016

REMINDER - FRAUDULENT PHONE SCAMS REPORTED ACROSS POLK COUNTY

On Wednesday, August 17th a 79 year old woman received a phone call from a male suspect claiming to be her grandson. The suspect caller told the victim that she needed to send a MoneyGram in the amount of $2,000 so he could get out of jail. The suspect stated that he was involved in car accident and had a broken nose; this gave reason to the victim why the caller did not sound like her grandson.

A short time after sending the requested money the suspect called back stating that he needed an additional $2,000 since a baby had died in the accident. At this point the victim realized that the phone call was a scam and contacted authorities.

This type of activity is a crime and will be investigated and taken very seriously. Anyone receiving this type of telephone notification should not comply with payment. If a call like this is received, don’t offer revealing personal information and ask specific questions. Anything suspicious in nature should be reported to local law enforcement.

Click Here to see a list of some of the more popular phone scams being reported in Polk County.

Please be vigilant and spread the word to your friends, family and coworkers.

Nearly $90,000 in Victim Restitution Recovered

Friday, July 29, 2016

Thanks to the coordinated efforts of the Department of Human Services, the Polk County Sheriff’s Department and the Polk County Attorney's Office, a victim of elder financial exploitation has recovered $89,400.  The victim’s perpetrator was arrested, charged, and pled guilty to Dependent Adult Abuse – Financial Exploitation.  The perpetrator was granted a deferred judgment and placed on probation. 

In Iowa, a person that receives a deferred judgment must abide by all the terms of their probation, including paying Court fines and restitution, before their record is expunged.  Through the diligence of the Polk County Attorney Collection Unit and the Restorative Justice Center, the victim in this case was made whole and received payment in full for restitution. 

This case is an outstanding example of the steps taken to ensure that everyone involved received justice, including both the victim and the perpetrator.  The perpetrator can feel a sense of satisfaction that she was able to successfully complete her probation and have her record expunged--no easy feat considering the amount of the restitution involved.

Although the emotional scars may still remain, it is rewarding to know that the victim has been financially restored to a pre-crime level. 

Patrick Kirwan Sentencing

Monday, June 6, 2016

Kirwan.JPGOn June 3, 2016, Patrick Kirwan was sentenced after a jury convicted him of Murder in the Second Degree for the shooting death of his neighbor, Mark Hruska. Murder in the Second Degree carries a mandatory 50 year prison sentence with a requirement that he shall be denied parole or work release unless he has served at least seven-tenths of the maximum term of his sentence.  At the sentencing hearing the parents of the decedent gave powerful victim impact statements.  Mr. Kirwan declined to exercise his right of allocution.   Detective Brad Youngblut of the DMPD was the lead investigator on the case.  This case was prosecuted by Assistant Polk County Attorneys Michael Hunter and Mike Salvner, with the instrumental assistance of Legal Assistant Lindsay Morris.

Tarry Pote Sentencing

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Pote.JPGFormer Des Moines Police Officer Tarry Pote was sentenced on May 10, 2016 for a Class C Felony, Theft in the First Degree for theft of approximately $22,000 from the Des Moines Police Department Weight Lifting Club.  Pote’s request for a Deferred Judgment was denied.  The Honorable Judge William Kelly gave the defendant a ten year suspended sentence and two years of probation.  By prior agreement and in support of his request for probation, the defendant agreed to pay the full $22,000 in restitution on May 10, 2016.

Rodriguez Verdict Announced

Friday, May 6, 2016

Leyva.JPGOn May 6, 2016, a Polk County jury returned verdicts against defendant, Jonathan Leyva Rodriguez.  The defendant was charged with six crimes for events occurring in August of 2015.   Defendant struck and killed 41 year old Wade Franck and injured two other bike riders during the Urban Assault bicycling event.  After striking the riders, defendant fled the scene.  The jury convicted Rodriguez of Vehicular Homicide, Leaving the Scene of an Accident Resulting in Death, two counts of Leaving the Scene of a Personal Injury Accident, Driving While Barred and Driving While Intoxicated.   The case was prosecuted by Assistant Polk County Attorneys Mike Hunter and Olu Salami.  The lead investigators were Des Moines Police Officers Dom Ouimet and Mike Dixson.  Sentencing is set for June 17, 2016 at 8:30 a.m. in Courtroom 209A of the Polk County Courthouse before the Honorable Paul Scott.  

Please be safe.  Do not drink and drive.  

Kirwan Verdict

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Kirwan.JPGOn April 14, 2016 Patrick Kirwan was found guilty of Murder in the Second Degree for the death of Mark Hruska.  Hruska was shot seven times and killed March 1, 2015 at 321 SE Diehl St.  Des Moines, Iowa.

The case was investigated by the Des Moines Police Department, the Des Moines Police Department Identification Section, the Polk County Medical Examiner’s Office and the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation.  The lead investigator for the Des Moines Police Department was detective Brad Youngblut.

Sentencing is currently set for June 3, 2016 at 8:15 a.m. in Courtroom 208 of the Polk County Courthouse.  The defendant is currently being held in the Polk County Jail pending sentencing in this case.

Richard Shawhan Sentencing

Friday, April 15, 2016

Richard Gene Shawhan, a career criminal, was sentenced on April 14, 2016, to fifty years in prison for the beating death of Jeff Butts after being convicted by a jury of Murder in the Second Degree. In December 2014, Jeff let Shawhan stay with him as Shawhan had escaped and was on the run from the Fort Des Moines Correctional Facility.  On December 27, 2014, Shawhan, for unknown reasons, struck Jeff in the head three times with a baseball bat while Jeff was sleeping.  Jeff succumbed to his injuries on January 4, 2015.  Jeff is survived by his three children and his long-term girlfriend.  Shawhan will have to serve a minimum thirty-five years prior to be considered for parole.  

Lavelle McKinley Sentencing

Thursday, March 10, 2016

On January 16, 2013, Lavelle McKinley, age 42, was arrested and charged with Murder in the First Degree in the beating and strangulation death of Cynthia Rouse whose body was found in her Des Moines apartment on January 14, 2013.  This case took much longer than normal to resolve because of a pre-trial ruling made by the district court that McKinley’s public defenders should not be representing him because the public defender’s office had represented the victim’s husband in a previous unrelated case and had also represented several witnesses in other unrelated cases.  An interlocutory appeal of that ruling was granted by the Iowa Supreme Court but it wasn’t until March 31, 2015 that the Supreme Court filed an opinion which essentially determined that McKinley’s attorneys did not have a conflict of interest and that they could continue to represent him. 

On February 15, 2016 pursuant to a plea agreement, McKinley pled guilty to Murder in the Second Degree and Sexual Abuse in the Second Degree with those sentences to be served consecutive to one another.  Murder in the Second Degree is a Class B felony which has a special sentence of fifty years in prison.  Murder in the Second Degree is a forcible felony which requires the defendant to be sentenced to prison and in addition he must serve 70% of this sentence before he would be eligible for parole.  Sexual Abuse in the Second Degree is a Class B felony which has a sentence of twenty-five years in prison.  Sexual Abuse in the Second Degree is a forcible felony which requires the defendant to be sentenced to prison and in addition he must serve 70% of this sentence before he would be eligible for parole. 

On March 9, 2016, Judge Robert Hanson, sentenced McKinley to fifty years in prison on the Murder in the Second Degree charge and to twenty-five years on the Sexual Abuse in the Second Degree charge.  Judge Hanson required that these sentences be served consecutively which means that McKinley will have to serve fifty-two and one half years of mandatory prison time before he will be eligible for any type of parole.  McKinley will essentially spend the remainder of his life in prison for these violent and unprovoked crimes.  Assistant County Attorney Nan Horvat and Polk County Attorney John Sarcone prosecuted this case.

Ngor Makuey Sentencing

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

On January 4, 2016, Ngor Peter Makuey was sentenced to life in prison plus two years.

Makuey’s life sentence was imposed for the July 2, 2014 murder of 97-year-old Rupert Anderson.  The court imposed a consecutive two year sentence for an assault on Rupert’s wife, 94-year-old Harriet Anderson on the same day. 

In addition to counts of murder and assault, Makuey was also found guilty of Robbery in the First Degree and Burglary in the First Degree.  Sentences for those crimes were ordered to run concurrently with the homicide sentence.

Makuey, who lived nearby the Andersons, was convicted of breaking into the Anderson’s home and attacking the couple with a stainless steel grilling spatula.  Both victims suffered injuries inflicted by this weapon.  Despite their ages and the trauma inflicted on both Harriet and Rupert Anderson, both victims managed to get off calls for help.  Rupert Anderson activated a “Life Alert” device and Harriet dialed 911.  Because of the victim’s actions, police responded to the scene quickly.  Makuey was on the scene, but outside the residence when police arrived.  As police tended to the victims, the defendant fled the immediate area.

Despite his successful flight from the scene, quick thinking by Des Moines Police Officer Darin Miller, allowed officers to take Makuey into custody within an hour of the 911 call.  First responders had been accompanied by a COPS television crew.   The COPS crew captured a video image of the defendant when police arrived.  Miller captured a still image from the COPS video on his (Miller’s) cell phone.  With that image, Miller canvassed the area and found the defendant at his (Makuey’s) home shortly after his escape. Clothing with Harriet Anderson’s blood was found in the same room as the defendant.  The spatula was later also recovered from Makuey’s home.

Makuey served notice of Diminished Capacity and Insanity Defenses and waived his right to a jury trial.  The case went to trial before the Honorable Judge Jeffrey Farrell beginning on November 5, 2015.  Judge Farrell returned verdicts on December 11, 2015 finding the defendant guilty of Murder in the First Degree, Assault with Intent to cause Serious Injury, Robbery in the First Degree and Burglary in the First Degree.

The work of the Des Moines Police Department (in particular Officer Darin Miller, Detectives Lorna Garcia and Brad Youngblut and numerous members of the DMPD Identification Unit) was instrumental in the follow-up investigation and successful prosecution of Makuey.   Similarly, the analysis provided by the DNA section of the Iowa Division of Criminal investigation provided information critical to this prosecution. 

KCCI: How the state deals with OWI Offenders

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Petithory Metcalf Sentencing

Monday, September 8, 2014

On July 21, 2014, a Polk County jury found Miranda Rose Petithory Metcalf guilty of the crime of Murder in the Second Degree in the stabbing death of Juan Carlos Chavarria.  Petithory Metcalf had been charged with Murder in the First Degree in Chavarria’s death which occurred in a south side apartment in the early morning hours of November 29, 2013 but the jury found her guilty of Murder in the Second Degree.  On Friday, September 5, 2014, District Court Judge Karen Romano sentenced Petithory Metcalf to a term of fifty years in prison which by statute requires Petithory Metcalf to serve 70% of that sentence before she would be eligible for parole.  Petithory Metcalf was also ordered to pay all court costs, restitution, court appointed attorney fees and to pay the estate of the victim $150, 000.  Polk County Attorney John Sarcone and Assistant County Attorney Nan Horvat prosecuted the case on behalf of the State.

Russell & Shorter Sentencing

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

On July 25, 2014, Yarvon Russell and James Shorter appeared in Polk County District Court in criminal numbers FECR269513 and FECR269510 respectively for sentencing. Russell and Shorter were convicted by a Polk County jury of Murder in the Second Degree for their parts in the August 2013 beating death of Richard Daughenbaugh near Second Ave. and the Des Moines River pedestrian bridge. Russell and Shorter were each sentenced to a term of imprisonment not to exceed 50 years and must serve 70% of the sentence before being eligible for parole. Russell was also sentenced to terms of incarceration not to exceed two years and five years respectively upon the revocation of his probation on a charge of Carrying Weapons and a separate charge of Carrying Weapons on School Grounds.

Those sentences were ordered to be served concurrently with each other but consecutively to the 50 years sentence for Murder in the Second Degree. Russell and Shorter join a third codefendant, Kent Tyler, III, who was convicted and sentenced for Murder in the Second Degree in late 2013. Russell and Shorter were prosecuted by the Polk County Attorney’s Office Drug and Gang Bureau.

Contact Us

Polk County Attorney's Office
Polk County Justice Center
222 Fifth Avenue
Des Moines, IA 50309

Phone: (515) 286-3737
Fax: (515) 286-3428
Email: ctyatty@polkcountyiowa.gov