from the Cass Superior Court The Honorable Richard A.
Maughmer, Judge Trial Court Cause No. 09D02-1603-F2-5
Attorney for Appellant Mark K. Leeman Leeman Law Office and
Cass County Public Defender Logansport, Indiana
Attorneys for Appellee Curtis T. Hill, Jr. Attorney General
of Indiana Ian McLean Jodi Kathryn Stein Larry Allen Deputy
Attorneys General Indianapolis, Indiana
Brandon Black appeals his convictions for Level 2 Felony
Conspiracy to Commit Robbery Resulting in Serious Bodily
Injury and Level 2 Felony Robbery Resulting in
Serious Bodily Injury. He argues that he was denied the right to
counsel at a critical stage of the proceedings, that the
trial court erred by admitting into evidence the victim's
identification of Black, and that his enhanced convictions
violate Indiana's double jeopardy law. We find that Black
was denied the right to counsel at a critical stage of the
proceedings but that he was not prejudiced by the denial,
that any error of admitting into evidence the victim's
identification was harmless, and that his enhanced
convictions violated double jeopardy. Accordingly, we affirm
in part, reverse in part, and remand.
In January 2015, Sanjay Amin lived and worked at the Super 8
Motel in Logansport. Ashley Reinholt rented a room at the
motel on two occasions that month. Christopher Brown stayed
with Reinholt on both occasions, and Black, who was
Brown's cousin, was often present as well. Amin knew both
Black and Brown by sight.
On January 17, 2015, Reinholt and Amin made a plan to meet at
the Manor Motel and Amin would pay Reinholt for sex. Reinholt
told Brown of their plan, and Brown suggested that they rob
Amin instead. Brown told Black about the idea and left the
motel to pick up Black. Around 11:00 p.m. that night, Amin
observed from the front desk Brown return to the motel with
Black. Brown and Black picked up Reinholt and drove to the
Manor Motel. Shortly thereafter, Amin also departed for the
Manor Motel, and he observed the other vehicle enter the
Manor Motel parking lot.
Reinholt rented a motel room and then briefly returned to
Brown's vehicle before Black and Brown left the parking
lot. Amin recognized them as they passed by. Reinholt entered
the motel room by herself and texted the room number to both
Amin and Brown. After Amin arrived, Reinholt stepped outside
to smoke a cigarette; when she re-entered, she left the door
unlocked. Reinholt told Amin to remove his clothing, which he
A few minutes later, Black and Brown entered the motel room.
Their faces were covered. Brown began to beat Amin's face
with his fists while Black shoved Reinholt against the wall.
Amin heard one of the men say Reinholt's name. He
recognized Black and Brown from their clothing, which they
had worn earlier that day at the Super 8 Motel. Amin suffered
serious injuries from the beating. Black and Brown took
Amin's clothes and wallet, and fled the scene. Amin
returned to the Super 8 Motel. Reinholt stayed in the Manor
Motel room and texted Brown to pick her up.
Amin was in the Super 8 Motel lobby with another employee
when Reinholt, Black, and Brown entered. Black and Brown
quickly left and drove away. The police were called, and
Logansport Police Officer Travis Yike responded at midnight.
Amin, worried about his family's potential reaction to
what had happened, initially told Officer Yike that he had
fallen in the snow. Reinholt told Officer Yike that she and
Amin had been robbed, but she was unable to consistently tell
the same story. Amin eventually said that he had been robbed.
Amin and Reinholt were taken to the hospital for treatment.
Meanwhile, Detective D.J. Sommers went to the Manor Motel,
where he observed blood in the bedding of the motel room and
a blood trail from the motel room to the parking lot.
Detective Sommers then went to the hospital, where he spoke
with Reinholt and tried to speak with Amin. The detective
could get only some information from Amin due to Amin's
limited English skills and severe facial injuries.
Early the next morning, Amin returned to his room at the
Super 8 Motel. A police officer took him to the lobby and
asked whether Amin could identify anyone; both Black and
Brown stood outside in police custody. Because it was dark,
Amin asked for additional light, and a police officer shined
a light on the two men. Amin recognized Black and Brown based
on their clothing as the two men who had beaten and robbed
him, as the two men who had dropped Reinholt off at the Manor
Motel, and as the two men living with Reinholt in her Super 8
The State initially charged Black with Level 3 felony
conspiracy to commit robbery resulting in bodily injury and
Level 6 felony battery with moderate bodily injury. A
February 2016 joint jury trial for Brown and Black ended in a
mistrial because the jury was deadlocked.
On February 24, 2016, the State filed an amended information.
The modified charges included Level 2 felony conspiracy to
commit robbery resulting in serious bodily injury, Level 2
felony robbery resulting in serious bodily injury, and Level
5 felony battery resulting in serious bodily injury. On
February 29, 2016, an initial hearing took place on the
amended information; Black's trial counsel was not
present. During the hearing, the State said that after the
trial court approved the amended charges, the State would
dismiss the two original charges. The trial court stated the
sentence range for each charge. The trial court asked Black
whether he understood the allegations against him at this
point. Black answered affirmatively and did not make any
On July 19, 2016, the day before the trial, the State filed
an amended information that reflected the three pending
charges against Black and did not include the two original
charges. A jury trial took place on July 20-21, 2016. At the
start of the trial, the State filed two more amended
informations to clarify caption and citation mistakes. Black
objected to these corrections. The trial court overruled the
objection, finding that the corrections related to
technicalities and not the substance of the allegations.
At trial, Amin testified that he identified Black and Brown
outside the Super 8 Motel early in the morning after the
robbery. Black objected to the testimony, arguing that it was
based on an impermissible show-up identification procedure.
The trial court conducted a brief hearing outside the
presence of the jury, overruled the objection, and admitted
The jury found Black guilty of Level 2 felony conspiracy to
commit robbery resulting in serious bodily injury and Level 2
felony robbery resulting in serious bodily injury; it
acquitted him of Level 5 felony battery. At sentencing, the
trial court imposed consecutive thirty-year sentences for