This opinion will be unpublished and

may not be cited except as provided by

Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (1998).







State of Minnesota,


Earl Matthew Hatton, Jr.,



Filed November 21, 2000

Klaphake, Judge


Winona County District Court

File No. K999954



Mike Hatch, Attorney General, Robert A. Stanich, Assistant Attorney General, 525 Park Street, Suite 500, St. Paul, MN  55103; and


Charles MacLean, Winona County Attorney, Winona County Courthouse, 171 West Third Street, Winona, MN  55987 (for respondent)


Lawrence W. Pry, Assistant State Public Defender, 2829 University Avenue Southeast, Suite 600, Minneapolis, MN  55414 (for appellant)


            Considered and decided by Klaphake, Presiding Judge, Harten, Judge, and Anderson, Judge.

U N P U B L I S H E D   O P I N I O N


Appellant, convicted of fifth-degree assault and making terroristic threats, challenges the sufficiency of the evidence to support his convictions.  Because we conclude that the evidence was sufficient to support his convictions, we affirm.


            Appellant claims that the state did not prove his identity because only two of four witnesses could identify him at trial.  When reviewing a sufficiency of the evidence claim, we thoroughly analyze the record to determine whether the evidence, viewed in a light most favorable to the jury’s verdict, was sufficient to permit the jury to reach its verdict.  State v. Spann, 574 N.W.2d 47, 54 (Minn. 1998). 

            We conclude that evidence supporting appellant’s conviction is sufficient.  Two eyewitnesses identified appellant at trial.  Two additional eyewitnesses, who could not identify appellant in the courtroom because he had altered his hairstyle prior to trial, identified him from a photograph taken on the night of the altercation.  These same witnesses also identified appellant to police on the night of the altercation. 

            Appellant testified that he was present at the scene but that his cousin threatened the victim.  Appellant argues that the witnesses gave police descriptions on the night of the crime that better fit a description of his cousin than one of him.  However, appellant admitted that he and his cousin are similar in height and weight.

            Resolution of conflicting testimony and decisions regarding the credibility of witnesses are determinations for the fact finder.  State v. Obasi, 427 N.W.2d 736, 738 (Minn. App. 1988) (citations omitted).  The jury was free to decide that the witnesses’ identification of appellant was correct and credible.  Viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the verdict, we conclude that the evidence was sufficient to prove appellant’s identity as the perpetrator of these offenses.  See State v. McAdory, 543 N.W.2d 692, 696 (Minn. App. 1996) (evidence sufficient where witness identification reliable and corroborated by physical evidence); State v. Dillard, 355 N.W.2d 167, 172 (Minn. App. 1984) (evidence sufficient where three witnesses identified perpetrator in court), review denied (Minn. Oct. 30, 1984); Caldwell v. State, 347 N.W.2d 824, 828-29 (Minn. App. 1984) (evidence sufficient where witness identified perpetrator in court).