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Castaneda v. State

Court of Appeals of Indiana

March 13, 2014

VINCENT J. CASTANEDA, 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 ALLEN SUPERIOR COURT. The Honorable Frances C. Gull, Judge. Cause No. 02D06-1204-FC-112.

ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: P. STEPHEN MILLER, Fort Wayne, Indiana.

ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE: GREGORY F. ZOELLER, Attorney General of Indiana, ERIC P. BABBS, Deputy Attorney General, Indianapolis, Indiana.

FRIEDLANDER, Judge. KIRSCH, J., and BAILEY, J., concur.

OPINION

MEMORANDUM DECISION - NOT FOR PUBLICATION

FRIEDLANDER, Judge

Following a jury trial, Vincent J. Castaneda was convicted of class C felony Disarming a Law Enforcement Officer[1] and two counts of class D felony Resisting Law Enforcement.[2] Castaneda now appeals and presents the following restated issues for our review:

1. Did the trial court abuse its discretion in limiting the scope of Castaneda's cross-examination of a witness?
2. Did the State present sufficient evidence to support Castaneda's conviction for disarming a law enforcement officer?

We affirm.

On the evening of March 16, 2012, officers of the Fort Wayne Police Department were looking for Castaneda in connection with a report of a stolen vehicle. Sergeant William Michales and Officers Jason Crowder and Greg Milner went to a house where they believed Castaneda and the vehicle could be located. The officers were standing near the curb in front of the house when Castaneda pulled up in a vehicle matching the description of the reportedly stolen vehicle. Officers Crowder and Milner walked toward the vehicle while Sergeant Michales returned to his police cruiser. Officer Milner ordered Castaneda to turn off the car, but Castaneda pulled away at a high rate of speed. The officers gave chase in their police cruisers as Castaneda circled the block and returned to the house, where he jumped out of the vehicle and ran toward the front door.

Despite Sergeant Michales's repeated orders to stop, Castaneda ran into the house, through the living room, and into the kitchen, all with Sergeant Michales still in pursuit. Castaneda disregarded Sergeant Michales's commands for him to get on the floor and resisted Sergeant Michales's attempts to physically restrain him. Officer Crowder then entered the room and saw Castaneda fighting with Sergeant Michales. Sergeant Michales shoved Castaneda away from him and shouted for Officer Crowder to use his taser against Castaneda. Officer Crowder drew his department-issued taser and deployed it toward Castaneda's back. The taser probes struck Castaneda's back and he fell to the ground, but he was only momentarily incapacitated. When Officer Crowder ran forward and crouched down beside Castaneda, Castaneda kicked him in the torso, legs, and wrist. Officer Crowder then attempted to press the taser against Castaneda's leg in order to use the taser's " drive-stun" function to temporarily incapacitate him. Transcript at 201. Castaneda grabbed the ...


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