Court of Appeals of Missouri, Southern District, Second Division
FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF DUNKLIN COUNTY Honorable Benjamin
F. Lewis, Judge
WILLIAM W. FRANCIS, JR., J.
Renn ("Renn") appeals from the judgment of the
motion court denying his amended Rule 29.15 motion, without an evidentiary hearing, to
set aside his conviction of the unclassified felony of
statutory sodomy in the first degree. Renn challenges the
judgment of the motion court in one point on appeal. Finding
no merit to Renn's point, we affirm the judgment of the
and Procedural Background
forth only those facts necessary to complete our review. In
doing so, we view the evidence in the light most favorable to
the motion court's judgment. McCauley v. State,
380 S.W.3d 657, 659 (Mo.App. S.D. 2012).
August 31, 2009, a probable cause statement was filed. On
February 24, 2010, Renn was charged by information with one
count of statutory sodomy in the first degree for having
deviate sexual intercourse with D.B., the twelve-year-old son
of a friend.
case was set for a jury trial on November 29, 2010. A motion
hearing was set on October 18, 2010. Prior to the motion
hearing, Renn, his attorney, and the State entered into and
signed a two-page agreement wherein Renn agreed to waive jury trial,
take a polygraph exam, and if he failed the exam, plead
guilty and accept a ten-year sentence. However, if Renn
passed the polygraph exam, the State would dismiss the case.
The parties then appeared before the trial court and the case
was set for a bench trial on November 29, 2010.
failed the polygraph exam. He did not plead guilty, but
instead moved for a jury trial. The State opposed this and
filed the October 18, 2010 agreement with the trial court.
The trial court denied Renn's motion for a jury trial,
and set a new bench trial date. Renn filed three more motions
attempting to withdraw, quash, or otherwise negate his jury
trial waiver. All of these attempts were unsuccessful.
Ultimately, following a bench trial, Renn was convicted of
first-degree statutory sodomy, and was sentenced to twenty
years' in the Department of Corrections.
appealed his conviction and sentence, asserting that he
"never validly waived his right to jury trial in open
court or on the record." State v. Renn, 453
S.W.3d 276, 277 (Mo.App. S.D. 2014). This Court found no
plain error by the trial court, and affirmed Renn's
conviction and sentence. Id. at 278. Mandate was
issued on February 4, 2015.
March 2, 2015, Renn timely filed a pro se Rule 29.15
motion. On March 23, 2015, the motion court denied the motion
as untimely filed. A public defender entered an appearance on
behalf of Renn on March 31, 2015. The same day, counsel for
Renn filed a motion to reconsider the dismissal and, on April
16, 2015, the motion court reinstated the case and granted a
thirty-day extension to file an amended motion. On June 29,
2015, Renn timely filed his amended motion.
motion asserted that "trial counsel was ineffective for
failing to obtain [Renn]'s informed consent for his
waiver of his right to a jury trial[.]" More
specifically, Renn asserted that trial counsel
incorrectly advis[ed] [Renn] that, in addition to the written
agreement with the prosecutor, [Renn] would have an oral
agreement with the prosecutor that, should the state's
examiner determine him to be deceptive, the prosecutor would
turn over an audio-video recording of the polygraph exam, the
charges from the exam, and the exam report generated by the
state's polygraph examiner.
contended that, in fact, "[n]o such [oral] agreement
existed[, ]" and "[t]he polygraph examination was
not video or audio taped." Renn asserted further that
"trial counsel told [Renn] that they could hire an
independent polygraph examiner, who could use the audio-video
recording of the polygraph examination, the charts, and the
exam report to refute the state's examiner's opinion,
to restore his right to jury trial, and possibly get the case
dismissed." Renn contends he was prejudiced because, ...