FROM THE LITTLE RIVER COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT [NO. 41CR-18-8]
HONORABLE TOM COOPER, JUDGE
Phillip A. McGough, P.A., by: Phillip A. McGough, for
Rutledge, Att'y Gen., by: Rebecca Kane, Ass't
Att'y Gen., for appellee.
KENNETH S. HIXSON, JUDGE
Joseph Bowman appeals after he was convicted by a Little
River County Circuit Court jury of rape and was sentenced to
serve a total of 300 months' imprisonment. On appeal,
appellant contends that the trial court erred by denying his
motion for directed verdict for two reasons: (1) it was
impossible for him to have committed the crime on the date
charged in the information because he was deployed by the
military overseas; and (2) the State failed to prove the
element of sexual gratification. We affirm.
summary, appellant was charged with and convicted of raping
S.R., his minor stepdaughter, in violation of Arkansas Code
Annotated section 5-14-103 (Supp. 2017). At trial, S.R.'s
mother, Lisa Marie Bowman, testified that she was still
married to appellant but that they had separated in June
2017. Appellant was in the military and had been deployed to
Africa during most of 2017. Lisa and appellant have three
other children together, and appellant is S.R.'s
stepfather. Lisa explained that she and the children have
lived in several different homes. However, S.R. specifically
referred to the white house on County Road 716 that they had
lived in from 2011 until the end of 2015 as "Papa
testified that S.R. was thirteen years old at the time of
trial. However, due to her learning disabilities, S.R. had
the mentality of only a third grader. Lisa testified that she
had reported her daughter's rape to law enforcement on
October 21, 2017. Lisa explained that she overheard S.R.
asking her younger brother whether he would "play with
[himself] down there." After Lisa confronted S.R., she
realized that she needed to report the information to law
admitted on cross-examination that she had been arguing with
appellant through Facebook Messenger on October 7, 2017, and
that she had threatened that she would "f*** [his] life
up." However, Lisa explained that they routinely had
heated exchanges similar to the ones introduced at trial. She
testified that appellant had also threatened that he would
have her imprisoned for using his money for the children.
Moreover, Lisa denied that she knew anything about the rape
allegations until she overheard S.R. talking to her brother
on October 21, 2017.
testified that appellant had forced her to perform oral sex
on him on two separate occasions. The first occasion occurred
at "Papa Terry's house." She explained that her
mother had been at the store and that she had been in her
mother's bedroom when it happened. The second occasion
occurred when she had been in the woods hunting with
Eudy, a criminal investigator for the Howard County
Sheriff's Department, testified that appellant agreed to
undergo a computer voice-stress-analysis test that Eudy
conducted during the investigation. Appellant was advised of
his Miranda rights and signed a
stipulation/agreement before the test was conducted. In
addition to several other irrelevant "control
questions," appellant was specifically asked whether he
had "ever fingered S.R." or whether he had S.R.
ever give him "head." Appellant failed the test,
and the results of the test indicated that appellant was
being deceptive when he provided negative answers to those
two questions. Eudy testified that after he told appellant
about the failed test, appellant told him about a dream that
he had three months before his deployment to Africa.
Appellant indicated that he had a dream about S.R.
"giving him head" and that when he woke up, he
realized that it was not a dream. Portions of the audio
recordings from the test and discussion were played for the
jury and admitted into evidence.
Kennemore, an investigator for the Little River County
Sheriff's Office, testified that he investigated the
allegations and interviewed appellant at the sheriff's
office after appellant had been read his Miranda
rights. Portions of the video recordings from that interview
were played for the jury and admitted into evidence. During
that interview, appellant stated that he woke up one night to
S.R. performing oral intercourse on him. He explained that he
"[g]ot on to her" and told her to go back to her
room. Appellant then stated that he thought it was just a
testified at trial on his own behalf. Although his testimony
was inconsistent at times, appellant generally denied raping
S.R. Appellant admitted that three months before his
deployment to Africa, S.R. was only eleven years old.
Appellant testified that he woke up one night and found S.R.
"attempting to do something" to him. He stated that
he told her to leave the room. He denied that his penis was
erect or that he achieved any sexual gratification. Appellant
opined that the allegations were Lisa's "way of
trying to exact revenge" on him. On cross-examination,
appellant admitted that he had told law enforcement that he
had a dream and that S.R. had her mouth on his penis when he
woke up. However, at trial, appellant denied that S.R. ever
had her mouth on his penis and that it "didn't ever
make it to that point." Later in his testimony,
appellant stated that he had a dream about S.R. "giving
[him] a blow job [in which he] finished." However, he
then clarified that this dream was separate from the time
that he had a dream and woke up to S.R. attempting to do
something to him. Instead, he stated that the incident in
which S.R. had attempted to do something to him occurred in
July 2014. The jury found appellant guilty, and he was
sentenced to serve a total of 300 months' imprisonment.
This appeal followed.
Motion for ...