Wednesday, November 23, 2005

NCA Judge Cassel upholds trespassing conviction ( § 28-520(1) RRS Neb) against divorced husband who was frequenting couple's home after trial court had awarded home to wife but case was on appeal; Court rejects Def. Husband's affirmative defense that he had an "ownership interest" in the property, further Court refuses to entertain plain error appeal that trial court used a "negligence" mens rea standard to convict husband of knowingly entering property State v. Anderson, 14 Neb. App. 253 November 22, 2005. No. A-04-1298. Larry Anderson appeals from an order of the district court which affirmed his county court conviction on the charge of trespassing in what was formerly his marital home. Regardless of whether Anderson had an ownership interest in the home, we conclude that the State adduced sufficient evidence to show that Anderson knowingly entered the home without license or privilege. We therefore affirm. Wife filed for divorce in 2000. Court in 2001 Temp. orders had given wife exclusive possession of home. The court awarded home to wife in 2002 decree. The county court hearing the trespass case also had evidence that there was a "bond" or some kind of protection order in place. On June 17, 2003 court of appeals reversed divorce decree. Husb was cited for entering property on JUly 7, 2003 (after NCA had reversed divorce but before any it would have issued a mandate to the Antelope County Court). Def raises affirm. defense that he had an "ownership interest" in the property, especially since the court of appeals had reversed the divorce. NCA notes that this was not a specified affirmative defense under 28-520 ( § 28-522 RRs Neb). the court also noted that a "bond" prohibited def's entering the property. " According to the evidence, at one point, a bond prohibited Anderson from being at the former marital home. Carol had the locks changed several times, and Anderson did not have a key. Carol testified that she would not have given Anderson a license or privilege to enter the home for any reason, and Anderson admitted that Carol had not given him permission to be in the house. Viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the State, a rational trier of fact could have found beyond a reasonable doubt that Anderson entered the home knowing that he was not licensed or privileged to do so. " Court will not recognize plain error where def sought on appeal to raise trial court's purported improper use of a negligence standard to convict def Anderson argues that the county court erred in using a negligence standard, based upon that court's oral statement, "But I think the bottom line is that on July 7th, 2003 you knew or should have known based on all of the circumstances that you weren't authorized to be in that property." But " the argument that the county court erroneously applied a negligence standard was not assigned to or considered by the district court. " When the District court acts as the immediate appeals court the appeals court will not recognize errors that the District Court did not consider because the appellant did not raise it there. In re Estate of Trew, 244 Neb. 490, 498, 507 N.W.2d 478, 483 (1993) Defendants sentence of probation and a suspended 90 day jail sentence affirmed

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