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Perez v. State

Court of Appeals of Georgia

March 13, 2015

PEREZ
v.
THE STATE

Page 261

Cert. applied for.

Burglary, etc. Bibb Superior Court. Before Judge Simms.

Leon & Kim, Homero Leon, Jr., John S. LaRose, for appellant.

K. David Cooke, Jr., District Attorney, Myra H. Tisdale, Neil A. Halvorson, Assistant District Attorneys, for appellee.

DOYLE, Presiding Judge. Judgment affirmed. Miller and Dillard, JJ., concur.

OPINION

Page 262

Doyle, Presiding Judge.

Victor Perez appeals the denial of his motion for new trial following his conviction of burglary[1] and misdemeanor obstruction of an officer.[2] He contends that (1) evidence of a prior bad act was improperly admitted, (2) the trial court improperly excluded certain photographic evidence offered in his defense, and (3) he received ineffective assistance of counsel. For the reasons that follow, we affirm.

[331 Ga.App. 165] " On appeal from a criminal conviction, we view the evidence in the light most favorable to the verdict[,] and an appellant no longer enjoys the presumption of innocence." [3]

So viewed, the record shows that Perez lived in a mobile home park next door to the Mendoza family. One morning, the children went to school and the parents left for work, leaving eleven-year-old Dana with her four-year-old brother alone in the home. Dana had stayed home sick that day with the understanding that an older relative would come look after her and her brother. Soon after her parents left, Dana heard Perez walking on the front porch and observed him looking into the home's windows. Alarmed, she used a phone left with her by her father, Manuel, to call her mother, who instructed her to take pictures of the man and then lock

Page 263

her brother and herself in the bathroom. Dana complied, and while the mother called the police and raced home, Perez broke a window, entered the home, and walked through each room. Perez broke the locked bedroom door and then the locked bathroom door where Dana was hiding with her brother. As Perez attempted to grab Dana, they both heard a car horn honking and tires screeching into the parking area as Dana's mother arrived. Perez fled out the front door, where Dana's mother saw him jump off the porch as she climbed the stairs to find Dana. She found Dana and her brother unhurt but terrified and observed the broken window and interior doors, blood throughout the home, and nothing missing.

A police officer arrived to find Dana's father, who had just arrived, tussling with Perez outside his home, and, after a struggle between the officer and Perez, the officer was able to handcuff him on the ground. A second officer soon arrived and helped secure the scene. ...


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