Court of Appeals of Missouri, Eastern District, Third Division
KRYSTAL N. TRESLER, Movant/Appellant,
STATE OF MISSOURI, Respondent/Respondent.
from the Circuit Court of Ralls County Honorable David C.
B. SULLIVAN, J.
N. Tresler (Appellant) appeals from the motion court's
order denying her Amended Motion to Vacate, Set Aside or
Correct Judgment and Sentence (amended motion) after an
evidentiary hearing. Because the motion court's order
denying Appellant's amended motion was not a final,
appealable judgment, Appellant's appeal is dismissed.
and Procedural Background
was convicted after a jury trial of first-degree robbery and
second-degree murder stemming from Appellant's
involvement in the robbery of a gas station. Appellant owned
the getaway vehicle in which she waited as her accomplices
entered the gas station to commit the robbery. In the course
of the robbery, one of Appellant's accomplices shot and
killed the gas station attendant. After the robbery,
Appellant accompanied her accomplices to a nearby river where
they disposed of the gun used to shoot the attendant, as well
as clothing worn during the robbery.
Appellant admitted to her role when interviewed by police
about the robbery, the then-prosecuting attorney only filed
charges against two of Appellant's accomplices. Appellant
was subpoenaed to testify at the preliminary hearing of one
of her accomplices. Before testifying, Appellant sought the
advice of an attorney (pretrial counsel), who spoke to the
prosecuting attorney on Appellant's behalf. The
prosecuting attorney stated he was not considering charging
Appellant at that time; however, pretrial counsel did not
secure a promise of immunity for Appellant's testimony.
the then-prosecuting attorney left his position to become a
judge, the matter of the robbery was transferred to the
Missouri Attorney General's office, which opted to file
charges against Appellant. Appellant was convicted following
a jury trial and this Court affirmed her conviction on direct
appeal. State v. Tresler, 534 S.W.3d 308 (Mo. App.
being delivered to prison, Appellant filed a pro se
motion for post-conviction relief pursuant to Rule
29.15. Appointed counsel from the Missouri Public
Defender's office requested and received an extension to
file the amended motion.
amended motion contained four claims. The first claim
asserted Appellant's Fifth Amendment right against
self-incrimination was violated when, during trial, the
prosecution was permitted to read a transcript of
Appellant's testimony from her accomplice's
preliminary hearing. This claim argued her trial counsel
(trial counsel) acted unreasonably by allowing the
prosecution to read the transcript without objection, and but
for trial counsel's failure to raise a meritorious
objection there was a substantial likelihood the outcome of
the trial would have been different.
second claim asserted pretrial counsel provided ineffective
assistance by failing to secure an immunity agreement for
Appellant in exchange for her testimony at her
accomplice's preliminary hearing. The third claim
asserted counsel representing Appellant on her direct appeal
(appellate counsel) unreasonably failed to include a claim
the trial court erred by allowing footage from the crime
scene to be played at trial. Appellant's fourth claim
asserted trial counsel was ineffective for failing to call an
expert witness to explain the effects of the drugs Appellant
was under the influence of at the time of the robbery.
evidentiary hearing was held at which Appellant's
pretrial, trial, and appellate counsel testified, after which
the motion court took the matter under submission. In the
meantime, the prosecutor representing the State of Missouri
(State) filed proposed findings of fact and conclusions of
law denying Appellant's amended motion. Ultimately, the
motion court adopted the State's proposed order and
denied Appellant's second, third, and fourth claims. The
motion court's order made no mention of Appellant's
first claim alleging trial counsel was deficient for allowing
Appellant's preliminary hearing testimony to be read at
trial. This appeal follows.
to Hear Appeal
raises several claims of error, but as a preliminary matter
we address Appellant's first issue: whether we have
authority to hear this appeal. Appellant argues that because
the motion court failed to address and dispose of all claims