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Lapenotiere v. State

Court of Appeals of Minnesota

September 25, 2017

Edward John Lapenotiere, Jr., petitioner, Appellant,
v.
State of Minnesota, Respondent.

         Morrison County District Court File No. 49-CR-13-1486

          Cathryn Middlebrook, Chief Appellate Public Defender, Adam Lozeau, Assistant Public Defender, St. Paul, Minnesota (for appellant)

          Lori Swanson, Attorney General, St. Paul, Minnesota; and

          Brian Middendorf, Morrison County Attorney, Little Falls, Minnesota (for respondent)

          Considered and decided by Hooten, Presiding Judge; Bjorkman, Judge; and Bratvold, Judge.

         SYLLABUS

         The term "school zone" as defined by Minn. Stat. § 152.01, subd. 14a (2012), includes all city blocks that surround a school property.

          OPINION

          BJORKMAN, JUDGE

         Appellant challenges the denial of his petition for postconviction relief, arguing that the evidence is insufficient to support his conviction of second-degree controlled-substance crime because his home is not located in a school zone. We affirm.

         FACTS

         On August 20, 2013, K.W. contacted the Morrison County Sheriff's Department in connection with an outstanding arrest warrant. K.W. offered to arrange a purchase of controlled substances from appellant Edward John Lapenotiere, Jr., in exchange for the responding deputy's assistance in quashing the warrant. K.W. obtained heroin and Vicodin from Lapenotiere. The sale took place at Lapenotiere's home in Little Falls.

         Respondent State of Minnesota charged Lapenotiere with one count each of second-degree and third-degree controlled-substance crime. The second-degree charge was brought under Minn. Stat. § 152.022, subd. 1(6) (2012), which prohibits the sale of a controlled substance in a school zone. A jury found Lapenotiere guilty of both counts. The district court sentenced Lapenotiere to 78 months in prison. Lapenotiere did not appeal.

         Lapenotiere filed a timely petition for postconviction relief. He argued the evidence was insufficient to establish the sale occurred in a school zone, the prosecutor committed misconduct, and his conviction of third-degree controlled-substance crime must be vacated because it is a lesser-included offense. The district court granted Lapenotiere's request to vacate his ...


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