APPEAL FROM THE TWENTY-FOURTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT PARISH
OF JEFFERSON, STATE OF LOUISIANA NO. 15-182, DIVISION
"L" HONORABLE DONALD A. ROWAN, JR., JUDGE PRESIDING
COUNSEL FOR PLAINTIFF/APPELLEE, STATE OF LOUISIANA Paul D.
Connick, Jr. Terry M. Boudreaux Anne M. Wallis Andrew
COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPELLANT, JEFFERY M. HAYDIN James A.
Williams Lynleigh G. Noel Mary Vallon Hicks.
composed of Judges Susan M. Chehardy, Robert A. Chaisson, and
Hans J. Liljeberg.
A. CHAISSON JUDGE.
Jeffery M. Haydin, appeals his conviction and enhanced
sentence for second degree battery. For the reasons that
follow, we affirm defendant's conviction and sentence;
however, we remand the matter for correction of an error
patent as noted herein.
January 20, 2015, the Jefferson Parish District Attorney
filed a bill of information charging defendant with the
second degree battery of Katie Haydin, in violation of La.
R.S. 14:34.1. Defendant pled not guilty at his arraignment on
January 21, 2015. The matter proceeded to trial before a
six-person jury on June 21, 2016. The following day, the jury
returned a verdict of guilty as charged.
August 4, 2016, the trial court sentenced defendant to five
years imprisonment at hard labor. The State filed a multiple
offender bill of information,  alleging defendant to be a second
felony offender, to which defendant stipulated on September
1, 2016. On the same date, the trial court resentenced
defendant as a second felony offender, pursuant to La. R.S.
15:529.1, to ten years imprisonment at hard labor without
benefit of probation or suspension of sentence. Defendant now
November 21, 2014, defendant and his wife, Brandy Haydin,
traveled from Mississippi to Metairie, Louisiana, to attend
his mother's funeral. While at his deceased mother's
home in Metairie, he noticed that certain items had been
taken from her house. Nicole Jolly, a family friend who lived
nearby, informed Brandy that she had observed Katie Haydin,
defendant's sister-in-law, at defendant's
mother's house removing boxes of items. Defendant called
Scott Haydin, his brother and Katie's husband, to inquire
as to the whereabouts of the missing items and was informed
that Scott and his family were celebrating his daughter's
birthday at Chuck E. Cheese and did not intend on discussing
the subject at that time. Defendant then drove his family to
the birthday party where an altercation ensued between
defendant and Katie after defendant again attempted to broach
the subject regarding his mother's missing belongings.
Ryan Ancar of the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office was
dispatched to Chuck E. Cheese on Veterans Boulevard in
Metairie, where he encountered defendant, who had called the
police to report that he had been punched in the face by his
sister-in-law Katie. However, according to Katie and her
husband Scott, when defendant angrily confronted Scott about
his mother's belongings, Katie attempted to intervene at
which time defendant berated her and then "chest
bumped" her, prompting her to slap him in the face. When
Deputy Ancar advised defendant that Katie would not be
arrested, but rather issued a misdemeanor citation for simple
battery, he became upset, indicating his desire to have Katie
taken to jail. Defendant then left the scene, refusing to
provide a statement, and thus, a citation was never issued.
Katie and Scott, who also did not live in the area, were
advised to stay somewhere other than Denis Haydin's
house,  if possible, since they suspected that
defendant might go there.
one hour later, Deputy Ancar responded to a call of a
reported battery at Denis's residence on Canterbury Lane.
Upon arrival, Deputy Ancar again encountered Katie and Scott,
who explained that when they arrived at Denis's house,
defendant was standing outside of his truck yelling and
"bouncing around" while on his phone. After
informing the person on the phone that he was going "to
beat this bitch up, " defendant walked straight up to
Katie, knocked a box out of Katie's hands, and started
hitting her and Scott before attempting to flee in his truck,
which was being driven by defendant's wife. Katie
testified that she remembered being hit twice by defendant,
the first time did not cause her injury, but the second time
defendant punched her in the middle of her face with such
force that she fell to the ground. Katie described that blood
"gushed" from her nose and mouth and that she could
not see or breathe.
tried to stop defendant from leaving the scene by standing in
front of defendant's truck, as defendant instructed his
wife to run him over. When Scott would not move, defendant
got out of his truck with a broken glass bottle in hand and
started to chase Scott. Defendant eventually returned to his
truck and left the scene.
Ancar noted that Katie was sitting in the driveway in a pool
of her own blood and that Scott had "some visible marks
on his face." Katie was subsequently transported to the
hospital for treatment of her injuries. Dr. Ramiz Khalaf, who
treated Katie at the hospital, testified that Katie sustained
a broken nose and had considerable swelling to her eye.
trial, defendant presented a different version of events.
According to Ms. Jolly, who was with defendant and his wife
at the time of the incident, Katie and Scott arrived at
Denis's house and began yelling at defendant and his
wife. Katie then approached defendant and threw a box at him,
which defendant knocked away. She further testified that
Katie punched defendant in the face and spit on him,
prompting defendant to "slap" Katie. She recalled
that defendant and Scott then began fighting with one
another. Ms. Jolly further claimed that Scott's son
brought his father a drinking glass which he used to hit
defendant. Defendant's wife Brandy testified in
accordance with Ms. Jolly's account of the incident.
OF ERROR NUMBER ONE (Sufficiency of the Evidence)
first assigned error, defendant challenges the sufficiency of
the evidence used to convict him of second degree battery.
First, he contends that the State failed to prove that Katie
suffered "serious bodily injury, " and secondly,
that the evidence presented at trial proved he acted in
self-defense when he slapped Katie.
reviewing the sufficiency of the evidence, an appellate court
must determine if the evidence, whether direct or
circumstantial, or a mixture of both, viewed in the light
most favorable to the prosecution, was sufficient to convince
a rational trier of fact that all of the elements of the
crime have been proven beyond a reasonable doubt. Jackson
v. Virginia, 443 U.S. 307, 99 S.Ct. 2781, 61 L.Ed.2d 560
(1979); State v. Howard, 15-473 (La.App. 5 Cir.
12/9/15), 182 So.3d 360, 363. Under the Jackson
standard, a review of the record for sufficiency of the
evidence does not require the court to ask whether it
believes that the evidence at the trial established guilt
beyond a reasonable doubt. Rather, a reviewing court is
required to consider the whole record and determine whether
any rational trier of fact would have found guilt beyond a
reasonable doubt. State v. Jones, 08-20 (La.App. 5
Cir. 4/15/08), 985 So.2d 234, 240.
present case, defendant was convicted of second degree
battery. La. R.S. 14:34.1(A) provides, in pertinent part:
"Second degree battery is a battery when the offender
intentionally inflicts serious bodily
injury." La. R.S. 14:34.1(B)(3) defines
"serious bodily injury" as "bodily injury
which involves unconsciousness, extreme physical pain or
protracted and obvious disfigurement, or protracted loss or
impairment of the function of a bodily member, organ, or
mental faculty, or a substantial risk of death."
present case, defendant does not contest that a battery
occurred. However, he contends that his actions constituted
simple battery, rather than second degree battery, because
the State failed to prove Katie suffered "serious bodily
injury." Defendant specifically claims that a broken
nose that did not require surgery does not reach the
threshold of "serious bodily injury" necessitated
by the statute's definition.
State v. Mullins, 537 So.2d 386 (La.App.
4th Cir. 1988), the victim, who stood at five feet
five inches, and the defendant, who was six feet tall, were
driving home when an argument ensued. The victim and the
defendant slapped each other, causing the victim to stop the
car and get out. The defendant then followed her, grabbed her
by the shirt, and punched her in the nose, breaking it.
Afterwards, the two drove home, and once the defendant fell
asleep, the victim went to her mother's home and then to
an area hospital for medical treatment of her broken nose. On
appeal, the Fourth Circuit found that the evidence presented
was sufficient to sustain the defendant's conviction for
second degree battery. In finding that the defendant
possessed the requisite specific intent to inflict serious
bodily injury, the appellate court noted, "when a larger
man punches a smaller woman in her nose with enough force to
break it, that bodily injury involves extreme physical
pain." Id. at 392.
State v. Accardo, 466 So.2d 549 (La.App.
5th Cir. 1985), writ denied, 468 So.2d
1204 (La. 1985), the twenty-one-year-old male defendant
struck the seventeen-year-old female victim in the head with
either his fist or a blackjack after she refused his sexual
advances. Regarding her injuries, the victim testified at
trial that she was "stunned" and her head was
swollen. On appeal, this Court found the evidence sufficient
to establish that the defendant inflicted "serious
bodily injury" on the victim even though "nowhere
in her testimony did the victim speak of losing
consciousness, extreme pain (or any pain), disfigurement, or
impairment of a body function or part." In affirming the
defendant's conviction, this Court noted that the victim
did testify to receiving a blow to the head with either the
defendant's fist or a blackjack; that the injury suffered
by the victim did cause pain and swelling to her head; and
that when a twenty-one-year-old man strikes a
seventeen-year-old girl on the head with either his fist or a
blackjack, there is a substantial risk of death, serious
injury, or possible disfigurement. Id. at 552-53.
See also State v. Stowe, 93-2020 (La. 4/11/94), 635
So.2d 168 (where the Louisiana Supreme Court found that,
reviewing the evidence in a light most favorable to the
prosecution, any rational trier of fact could have found
beyond a reasonable doubt that the State proved the defendant
had intentionally inflicted extreme physical pain on the
officer without his consent).
in this case, we find that the evidence was sufficient to
establish all the elements of the offense of second degree
battery, including that of "serious bodily injury"
being challenged by defendant. At trial, the State presented
evidence that after an altercation at Chuck E. Cheese,
defendant and Brandy drove to Denis's house where Katie
and Scott were staying. Upon Katie and Scott's arrival,
they observed defendant standing outside of his truck yelling
and "bouncing around" while on his phone. After
informing the person on the phone that he was going "to
beat this bitch up, " defendant, who is larger than
Katie, rushed towards her, knocked a box out of her hands,
and started hitting her and Scott before attempting to flee
in his truck. Katie testified that defendant punched her with
a closed fist in the middle of her face with such force that
she fell to the ground. Katie described that she could not
see or breath as blood "gushed" from her nose and
mouth. When the police arrived, Katie reported her pain as a
ten on a scale from one to ten. Katie was then transported to
the hospital and treated by Dr. Khalaf for complaints
regarding pain and swelling to her nose and eye. At the
hospital, Katie reported her pain as a five on a scale of one
to ten. After several tests, it was determined that Katie had
sustained a broken nose and considerable swelling to her eye,
for which Dr. Khalaf prescribed her pain medication.
present case, while the evidence did not show that
Katie's injury involved unconsciousness, disfigurement,
protracted loss or impairment of the function of a bodily
member, organ, or mental faculty, or a substantial risk of
death, the evidence did establish that Katie's injury
caused her extreme physical pain. Moreover, as noted by the
Fourth Circuit in State v. Mullins, supra,
"when a larger man punches a smaller woman in her nose
with enough force to break it, that bodily injury involves
extreme physical pain." Accordingly, viewing the
evidence presented at trial in the light most favorable to
the prosecution, we conclude that a rational trier of fact
could have determined that the elements of the crime of
second degree battery were proven beyond a reasonable doubt;
thus, defendant is not entitled to a reduction of his
conviction to the lesser offense of simple
appellate brief, defendant also contends that he presented
sufficient evidence at trial to prove by a preponderance of
the evidence that he was acting in self-defense when he
fact that an offender's conduct is justifiable, although
otherwise criminal, constitutes a defense to prosecution for
any crime based on that conduct. La. R.S. 14:18; State v.
Patterson, 10-415 (La.App. 5 Cir. 1/11/11), 63 So.3d
140, 148, writ denied, 11-338 (La. 6/17/11), 63
So.3d 1037. The use of force or violence upon the person of
another is justifiable when committed for the purpose of
preventing a forcible offense against the person or a
forcible offense or trespass against property in a
person's lawful possession, provided that the force or
violence used must be reasonable and apparently necessary to
prevent such offense. La. R.S. 14:19(A); State v.
Steele, 01-1414 (La.App. 5 Cir. 9/30/02), 829 So.2d 541,
547, writ denied, 02-2992 (La. 9/19/03), 853 So.2d
632. The aggressor or the person who brings on a difficulty
cannot claim the right of self-defense unless he withdraws
from the conflict in good faith and in such a manner that his
adversary knows or should know that he desires to withdraw
and discontinue the conflict. La. R.S. 14:21; State v.
Howard, 182 So.3d at 363.
non-homicide case, the defendant has the burden of proving by
a preponderance of the evidence that his actions were in
self-defense or in defense of others. The defense of
self-defense in a non-homicide situation requires a dual
inquiry: an objective inquiry into whether the force used was
reasonable under the circumstances and a subjective inquiry
into whether the force was apparently necessary. State v.
Nailor, 10-1062 (La.App. 5 Cir. 11/15/11), 78 So.3d 816,
821-22, writ denied, 11-2780 (La. 4/27/12), 86 So.3d
present case, the jury was presented with conflicting
testimony regarding the altercation at Denis's house. The
State presented testimony that upon Katie and Scott's
arrival at Denis's house, they observed defendant
standing outside of his truck yelling and "bouncing
around" while on his phone. After informing the person
on the phone that he was going "to beat this bitch up,
" defendant, unprovoked, rushed towards her, ...