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Woman’s conviction for threatening apartment manager upheld

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The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld a woman’s intimidation conviction Thursday, finding the evidence supports the charge that she threatened the manager of the apartment complex where she lived.

Donnetta Newell was being evicted from an Indianapolis apartment complex and sued for damages over a recent incident in which management believed she had damaged a desk in the apartment manager’s office with a meat cleaver.

Newell was upset about the eviction notice and told apartment security guard Russell Growe that the new lady upstairs – the apartment manager Evelyn Young – was about to get her f******g head knocked off. Growe was concerned for Young’s safety and immediately told her about the threats. Extra security was posted outside her office for several weeks.

Newell appealed her Class A misdemeanor conviction, arguing the evidence couldn’t sustain her conviction and that the trial court abused its discretion by admitting evidence of the desk incident.

“Here, Growe testified that, based on Newell’s past interactions with him, she was aware his duties included reporting problems to the apartments’ manager. Furthermore, her threat against Young raised a security issue, and a reasonable person could conclude that Growe would have to act on that threat. There is sufficient evidence for the finder of fact to conclude Newell knew that her statement would be transmitted to Young,” Senior Judge Randall Shepard wrote in Donnetta Newell v. State of Indiana, 49A02-1309-CR-744.

The appellate court also concluded that evidence about the desk incident was admissible under Rule 404(b) as probative of whether Newell intended to intimidate.

“Newell has argued at trial and on appeal that she never intended to threaten Young but was instead merely expressing frustration at being evicted. On this question of intent, evidence that she was believed to have done violence recently in the manager’s office was legitimately available for the purpose of evaluating whether her subsequent statements about doing violence to the new manager were actually threats or just hyperbole. Moreover, evidence of the desk incident was admissible under Rule 404(b) because it was material to evaluating Growe and Young’s reaction to Newell’s statement,” Shepard wrote.

 

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  1. I need an experienced attorney to handle a breach of contract matter. Kindly respond for more details. Graham Young

  2. I thought the slurs were the least grave aspects of her misconduct, since they had nothing to do with her being on the bench. Why then do I suspect they were the focus? I find this a troubling trend. At least she was allowed to keep her law license.

  3. Section 6 of Article I of the Indiana Constitution is pretty clear and unequivocal: "Section 6. No money shall be drawn from the treasury for the benefit of any religious or theological institution."

  4. Video pen? Nice work, "JW"! Let this be a lesson and a caution to all disgruntled ex-spouses (or soon-to-be ex-spouses) . . . you may think that altercation is going to get you some satisfaction . . . it will not.

  5. First comment on this thread is a fitting final comment on this thread, as that the MCBA never answered Duncan's fine question, and now even Eric Holder agrees that the MCBA was in material error as to the facts: "I don't get it" from Duncan December 1, 2014 5:10 PM "The Grand Jury met for 25 days and heard 70 hours of testimony according to this article and they made a decision that no crime occurred. On what basis does the MCBA conclude that their decision was "unjust"? What special knowledge or evidence does the MCBA have that the Grand Jury hearing this matter was unaware of? The system that we as lawyers are sworn to uphold made a decision that there was insufficient proof that officer committed a crime. How can any of us say we know better what was right than the jury that actually heard all of the the evidence in this case."

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