Appeal from the 22nd Judicial District Court Parish of St.
Tammany, State of Louisiana No. 563468 The Honorable August
J. Hand, Judge Presiding
L. Montgomery District Attorney Matthew Caplan Assistant
District Attorney Covington, Louisiana Attorneys for the
State of Louisiana
T. Vo Clark Mandeville, Louisiana Attorney for
Defendant/Appellant, Victor Galan
Galan Angola, Louisiana Defendant/Appellant In Proper Person
BEFORE: McDONALD, CRAIN, AND HOLDRIDGE, JJ.
defendant, Victor Galan, appeals his aggravated rape
conviction and sentence of life imprisonment at hard labor,
without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of
sentence. See La. R.S. 14:42. We affirm.
victim, E.B.R.M.,  is the biological daughter of the
defendant, and in 2014 lived with the defendant, her mother
(who was married to the defendant), and her two younger
sisters (also children of the defendant and the victim's
mother). At trial, E.B.R.M. testified that following her
eleventh birthday, the defendant began touching her breasts
and buttocks, then began masturbating on her and sodomizing
her, sometimes while she was in bed with her sisters. The
abuse continued over a six-month period and stopped when
E.B.R.M.'s sisters told their mother what was happening,
E.B.R.M. confirmed their accounts, and E.B.R.M.'s mother
reported the abuse to the police. The defendant denied raping
or inappropriately touching E.B.R.M., claiming his daughters
are illegal immigrants and were coerced into making these
accusations against him to obtain a "U-visa," which
is available to certain crime victims and their
OF THE EVIDENCE
defendant contends his conviction should be reversed because
it is based on insufficient evidence.
conviction based on insufficient evidence cannot stand, as it
violates due process. See U.S. Const, amend. XIV,
La. Const, art. I, § 2. In reviewing claims challenging
the sufficiency of the evidence, an appellate court must
determine whether any rational trier of fact could have found
the essential elements of the crime proven beyond a
reasonable doubt based on the entirety of the evidence, both
admissible and inadmissible, viewed in the light most
favorable to the prosecution. See Jackson v.
Virginia, 443 U.S. 307, 319, 99 S.Ct. 2781, 2789, 61
L.Ed.2d 560 (1979); State v. Oliphant, 13-2973 (La.
2/21/14), 133 So.3d 1255, 1258 (per curiam); see
also La. Code Crim. Pro. art. 821B; State v.
Mussall, 523 So.2d 1305, 1308-09 (La. 1988). When
circumstantial evidence forms the basis of the conviction,
the evidence, "assuming every fact to be proved that the
evidence tends to prove ... must exclude every reasonable
hypothesis of innocence." La. R.S. 15:438;
Oliphant, 133 So.3d at 1258.
process standard does not require the reviewing court to
determine whether it believes the witnesses or whether it
believes the evidence establishes guilt beyond a reasonable
doubt. State v. Mire, 14-2295 (La. 1/27/16), ___
So.3d ___, ___ (per curiam) (2016WL314814, *4).
Rather, appellate review is limited to determining whether
the facts established by the direct evidence and inferred
from the circumstances established by that evidence are
sufficient for any rational trier of fact to
conclude beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant was
guilty of every essential element of the crime. State v.
Gardner, 16-0192 (La.App. 1 Cir. 9/19/16), 204 So.3d
265, 267. The weight given evidence is not subject to
appellate review; therefore, an appellate court will not
reweigh evidence to overturn a factfinder's determination
of guilt. State v. Livous, 18-0016 (La.App. 1 Cir.
9/24/18), 259 So.3d 1036, 1040, writ denied, 18-1788
(La. 4/15/19), ___ So.3d ___.
"the act of anal, oral, or vaginal sexual intercourse
with a male or female person committed without the
person's lawful consent." La. R.S. 14:41A.
"Emission is not necessary, and any sexual penetration,
when the rape involves vaginal or anal intercourse, however
slight, is sufficient to complete the crime." La. R.S.
14:41 B. The crime of aggravated rape includes a rape
committed where the sexual intercourse is deemed to be
without lawful consent ...