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State v. Kramer

September 02, 2003

STATE OF MINNESOTA, RESPONDENT,
v.
DOUGLAS HOWARD KRAMER, APPELLANT.



Otter Tail County District Court File No. K4011178

Considered and decided by Wright, Presiding Judge, Lansing, Judge, and Parker, Judge.*fn1

SYLLABUS BY THE COURT

Because the defendant's knowledge of the complainant's age is not an element of third-degree criminal sexual conduct, the defendant has the burden of raising and proving by a preponderance of the evidence the mistake-of-age defense.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Wright, Judge

Affirmed

OPINION

On appeal from a conviction of third-degree criminal sexual conduct, appellant argues that the state failed to present sufficient evidence to rebut his defense of mistake of age. Appellant also argues that the district court erred when, following an in camera review, it declined to require disclosure of documents that the state's expert witness initially failed to produce for the district court's review. We affirm.

FACTS

Appellant Douglas Kramer was charged with third-degree criminal sexual conduct, in violation of Minn. Stat. §á609.344, subd. 1(b) (2000). The following evidence was presented at trial. Kramer operated a resort in Otter Tail County. M.M., who was 15 years old on the offense date, lived down the road from Kramer and frequently visited the recreation room of the resort.

In November 2000, M.M. and Kramer were in the recreation room when Kramer began making sexual comments to M.M. M.M. testified that Kramer then physically forced her into the backseat of his vehicle located in the adjoining garage. Despite M.M's resistance, Kramer removed M.M.'s clothing and told her "[i]f you scream, no one will hear you." Kramer tried kissing M.M. on the lips and kissed her neck and chest. He also engaged in oral sex and in intercourse with M.M.

M.M. stated that, as a result of this incident, she was afraid of contracting AIDS or other sexually transmitted diseases and of becoming pregnant so she asked her mother to schedule an appointment for her at Planned Parenthood. M.M. visited Planned Parenthood and told an individual there that she had been raped by a neighbor. M.M. also reported her experience with Kramer at a group home during the summer of 2001.

After receiving a report that M.M. had been sexually assaulted, Detective Matt McGuire interviewed Kramer at his home in June 2001. Kramer admitted having oral sex and intercourse with M.M. McGuire testified that Kramer believed that the age of consent in Minnesota was 18, but McGuire did not ask Kramer how old he thought M.M. was.

M.M. testified that she was 15 when Kramer had sexual intercourse with her. She could not directly recall an occasion when she talked with Kramer about her age, but "there were several suggestions made." M.M. discussed with Kramer her plans to apply to a high school, which she explained must be done the year before entering. But Kramer never asked M.M. how old she was, and she never discussed school activities with him.

Kramer testified that he was born on July 4, 1942, and admitted that he had sex with M.M. He stated that he thought M.M. was a senior in high school and that he believed she was 17 at the time they had sex. Kramer initially testified that he knew M.M. was still in school and probably had ...


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