FROM THE SIXTEENTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT PARISH OF IBERIA,
NO. 11-1790 HONORABLE LEWIS H. PITMAN, JR., DISTRICT JUDGE.
Bofill Duhe District Attorney, Nicole Burke, W. Claire
Howington, Assistant District Attorneys, Counsel for
Appellee: State of Louisiana
Daniels, III Daniels & Washington, Counsel for
Defendant/Appellant: Paul Knatt.
composed of Sylvia R. Cooks, Shannon J. Gremillion, and
Phyllis M. Keaty, Judges.
PHYLLIS M. KEATY JUDGE.
Paul Knatt, appeals his conviction and sentence for
manslaughter. For the following reasons, Defendant's
conviction and sentence are affirmed.
& PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
September 1, 2011, Ridge Honore approached his cousin,
Defendant herein, and asked a derogatory question. Both men
began arguing, and Honore told Defendant, "You survived
last time, but you won't survive this time." Honore
returned to his truck, while Defendant went to his car and
retrieved a gun. Defendant thereafter approached Honore, who
was sitting inside of his truck with his infant child and
shot Honore multiple times. Honore died. No one saw Honore
with a weapon, and no weapon was found on his person or in
December 16, 2011, Defendant was charged by bill of
information with manslaughter, a violation of La.R.S. 14:31.
The bill was thereafter nolle prossed because Defendant was
charged by a bill of indictment with second degree murder, a
violation of La.R.S. 14:30.1. A jury trial began on June 15,
2015, and ended in a mistrial on June 17, 2015. On September
11, 2017, Defendant's second jury trial commenced after
which the jury returned a guilty verdict on the responsive
verdict of manslaughter. Defendant was sentenced to serve
fifteen years at hard labor. He filed a Motion to Reconsider
Sentence, which the trial court denied. Defendant appealed.
appeal, Defendant asserts the following assignments of error:
1. The Trial Court erred as a matter of law denying the
Accused, Paul Knatt, of his Constitutional right to present a
defense when it ruled that the Accused could not present
evidence of the January 31, 2010, shooting to show his state
of mind, at the time of the September 1, 2011, shooting until
he provided a foundation under Louisiana Code of Evidence
Article 404 A(2).
2. Did Paul Knatt present appreciable evidence of an overt
act or hostile demonstration to allow [the] January 30, 2010
shooting into evidence.
3. The sentence imposed is excessive for this offense and