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Evidence supports elevated burglary conviction

February 9, 2012

The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a man’s conviction of Class A felony burglary resulting in bodily injury because all the statute requires is evidence the victim experienced physical pain, which the victim in this case did when the burglar twisted her hand.

Angus Toney and an accomplice broke into the home of G.R. and demanded money, drugs and her purse. When G.R. tried to dial 911, Toney grabbed her hand, twisted the phone out of it, and threw the phone across the room. G.R. later testified that caused her pain.

Toney argued that he only committed Class B felony burglary, not Class A felony burglary resulting in bodily injury, because there wasn’t sufficient evidence to find his victim suffered any bodily injury. The applicable statute defines bodily injury as “any impairment of physical condition, including physical pain.” Tony claimed that G.R. only had a fleeting moment of pain, so it’s insufficient to establish bodily injury.

“To us, however, the statutory definition of bodily injury is clear and unambiguous. It contains no requirement that the pain be of any particular severity, nor does it require that the pain endure for any particular length of time. It must simply be physical pain,” wrote Judge Paul Mathias in Angus Toney v. State of Indiana, No. 89A01-1108-CR-374.

 

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