SIOUX CITY -- The Iowa Court of Appeals has upheld a Sioux City man's murder conviction and sentence of life in prison without parole but returned the case to Woodbury County for resentencing on two other charges.
The three-judge panel on Wednesday denied Timothy Schroeder's claim of ineffective trial counsel and also ruled that District Judge Jeffrey Neary did not err when choosing not to redact statements from Schroeder's recorded interview with law enforcement officers.
A Woodbury County District Court jury in July 2016 found Schroeder, 32, guilty of first-degree murder, going armed with intent and felon in possession of a firearm for the Jan. 9, 2015, shooting death of Dustin Wilder in his Sloan, Iowa, home.
Neary later sentenced Schroeder to the mandatory life sentence and added 15 years for the going armed with intent and felon in possession of a firearm charges, the sentences for each increased to 15 years because of a habitual offender enhancement based on Schroeder's criminal history.
The appeals court preserved Schroeder's conviction and life sentence for first-degree murder, but ruled that he must be resentenced on the other charges because Schroeder said he was not made aware of the consequences of the habitual offender enhancement and the court did not inform him of the minimum and maximum sentences under the enhancement.
Though Schroeder is serving a lifetime prison sentence, the appeals court said that the issue of the two lesser sentences could become consequential if Schroeder's life sentence were ever commuted by the governor or overturned by another court.
The case will be returned to Woodbury County, where Neary will conduct a hearing to resolve the habitual offender enhancement issue and resentence him accordingly on the going armed with intent and felon in possession of a firearm charges.