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Petry v. State

Court of Appeals of Indiana

February 25, 2014

MARK A. PETRY, Appellant-Defendant,
v.
STATE OF INDIANA, Appellee-Plaintiff

Editorial Note:

These opinions are not precedents and cannot be cited or relied upon unless used when establishing res judicata or collateral estoppel or in actions between the same party. Indiana Rules of Appellate Procedure 65(D).

APPEAL FROM THE PIKE CIRCUIT COURT. The Honorable Jeffrey L. Biesterveld, Judge. Cause No. 63C01-1201-FB-29.

ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: STEVEN E. RIPSTRA, Rispstra Law Office, Jasper, Indiana.

ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE: GREGORY F. ZOELLER, Attorney General of Indiana; JAMES B. MARTIN, Deputy Attorney General, Indianapolis, Indiana.

ROBB, Judge. BARNES, J., and BROWN, J., concur.

OPINION

MEMORANDUM DECISION - NOT FOR PUBLICATION

ROBB, Judge

Case Summary and Issues

After a jury trial, Mark A. Petry was found guilty of criminal deviate conduct, a Class B felony; sexual battery, a Class D felony; and criminal confinement, a Class D felony. Petry raises two issues on appeal, which we restate as: 1) whether the trial court abused its discretion in excluding evidence regarding the witnesses' prior sexual conduct, evidence of coaching, and evidence of the living conditions at the victim's prior residence; and 2) whether there is sufficient evidence to support his convictions. Concluding the trial court did not abuse its discretion in excluding the evidence and that the evidence is sufficient, we affirm.

Facts and Procedural History

The facts most favorable to the verdict reveal that in June 2010, Petry's fifteen year old daughter, C.P., moved into Petry's house in Huntingburg, Indiana ("Huntingburg house"). Also living at the Huntingburg house were Ca.P. (C.P.'s older sister) and Terrie Bolin (Petry's girlfriend).[1] Bolin's adult daughter Amanda Tornabeni also lived in the house for a short time.[2] C.P. and her sister had previously lived with their mother. Sometime after C.P. moved in to the Huntingburg house, Petry began touching her in ways that made her feel uncomfortable. Petry told C.P. that she was being tested to see if she could protect herself against a sexual attack. Several times Petry laid C.P. down on his bed, pulled her pants and underwear down, "put his private areas" on C.P., and touched his penis to her vagina. Transcript at 171. These incidents generally ran together in C.P.'s mind, but she knew there had been more than twenty instances in two years.

On one occasion, Petry used bungee cords to tie C.P to the bed. Another time, C.P. " freaked out" and hit Petry in the face while he was holding her down. Id. at 181. Petry then hit C.P. in the face fifteen times with an open hand but did not leave a mark. C.P. kept a journal during this time period, but she did not write about the abuse because she took the journal to school and did not want anyone to find out. In November 2010, C.P. wrote in her journal that Petry said she " should try sex." Id. at 259. C.P. believed that to mean Petry was telling her to " try it with him." Id. Petry never engaged in sexual intercourse with C.P. because C.P. was his daughter " and he loved her." Id. at 172. No one else was present when these attacks occurred.

C.P. trusted Bolin and told her what Petry was doing. Petry and Bolin confronted C.P. and told her that she brought it on herself because she dressed " slutty." Id. at 176. Bolin told Tornabeni multiple times that Petry and C.P. had a sexual relationship, but Bolin would not provide details beyond that C.P. would be in Petry's bedroom at night. Bolin also asked her sister, who works as a victim's services advocate in Kentucky, for the number ...


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