Court of Appeals of Missouri, Southern District, First Division
APPEAL FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF LACLEDE COUNTY. Honorable Stanley Moore, Judge.
For Appellant: Emmett D. Queener.
For Respondent: Chris Koster and Adam Rowley.
JEFFREY W. BATES, J. -- CONCURS. WILLIAM W. FRANCIS, JR., P.J./C.J. -- CONCURS.
DANIEL E. SCOTT, J.
Convicted of abusing and murdering a two-year-old, Cheryl Patrick appeals, raising two preserved evidentiary challenges and a plain error claim. None have merit. We affirm the convictions.
The victim (A.W.), her father, and Patrick lived together. The father went to work, leaving A.W. in Patrick's care, and returned to find his daughter stiff and unresponsive in her playpen. She died in the hospital two days later from head injuries due to non-accidental, abusive trauma. A subdural hematoma, retinal hemorrhaging, and other injuries were consistent with A.W. having been severely shaken, thrown, or pushed into something while she was with Patrick, who does not challenge the sufficiency of proof supporting her convictions.
Point I -- Admission of Patrick's Statement
After Patrick was arrested and booked into jail, she was taken to an interview room. She signed a waiver of Miranda  rights and gave a statement which the trial court refused to suppress and admitted at trial over Patrick's objection.
Patrick claims error, alleging that she unequivocally invoked her right to counsel prior to the statement and did not reinitiate discussions thereafter.
Under the Fifth Amendment, Patrick had a right to have counsel present during custodial interrogation. State v. Lanos, 14 S.W.3d 90, 94 (Mo.App. 1999). To invoke this right, she had to make an unambiguous, specific, and unequivocal request for counsel. State v. Norman, 431 S.W.3d 563, 569 (Mo.App. 2014). If Patrick made such a request, questioning had to stop ...