This opinion will be unpublished and

may not be cited except as provided by

Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (2006).







State of Minnesota,





Charlene Ann Shingobe,




Filed April 10, 2007


Halbrooks, Judge



Mille Lacs County District Court

File No. 48-CR-05-185



Lori Swanson, Attorney General, 1800 Bremer Tower, 445 Minnesota Street, St. Paul, MN  55101;


Janice S. Kolb, Mille Lacs County Attorney, Mark J. Herzing, Assistant County Attorney, Courthouse Square, 525 Second Street Southeast, Milaca, MN 56353 (for respondent)


John M. Stuart, State Public Defender, Sara L. Martin, Assistant Public Defender, 2221 University Avenue Southeast, Suite 425, Minneapolis, MN 55414 (for appellant)



            Considered and decided by Halbrooks, Presiding Judge; Kalitowski, Judge; and Ross, Judge.

U N P U B L I S H E D   O P I N I O N


            On appeal from her conviction of gross-misdemeanor obstruction of legal process, appellant argues that the evidence is insufficient to prove that she intended to obstruct or hinder police.  We affirm.


            On December 12, 2004, appellant Charlene Ann Shingobe called 911 to have her adult son removed from their home because he was drunk.  Mille Lacs Tribal Police Officer Jeremiah Erickson responded and, with appellant’s help, attempted to remove her son.  But when the son resisted, striking Officer Erickson in the arm and chest, Officer Erickson sought to place the son under arrest.  Because the son continued to swing at him, Officer Erickson decided to use his Taser to temporarily disable the son.  In response to seeing the Taser, appellant ran up to Officer Erickson and subsequently pushed him three times, knocking him down twice, and causing injury to the officer’s leg.  Appellant denied this account of the incident at trial.  Appellant was charged with gross-misdemeanor obstruction of legal process in violation of Minn. Stat. § 609.50, subds. 1(1), 2(2) (2004).  The jury found appellant guilty.  This appeal follows.


            Appellant contends that the state failed to produce sufficient evidence of her intent to obstruct Officer Erickson to sustain the verdict.  The state must prove “beyond a reasonable doubt all of the essential elements of the crime with which the defendant is charged.”  State v. Ewing, 250 Minn. 436, 442, 84 N.W.2d 904, 909 (1957).  In considering a claim of insufficient evidence, our review is “limited to a painstaking analysis of the record to determine whether the evidence, when viewed in a light most favorable to the conviction,” was sufficient for the jurors to reach their verdict.  State v. Webb, 440 N.W.2d 426, 430 (Minn. 1989).  The reviewing court must assume that “the jury believed the state’s witnesses and disbelieved any evidence to the contrary.”  State v. Moore, 438 N.W.2d 101, 108 (Minn. 1989).  “This is especially true where resolution of the case depends on conflicting testimony, because weighing the credibility of witnesses is the exclusive function of the jury.”  State v. Pieschke, 295 N.W.2d 580, 584 (Minn. 1980).  Therefore, we defer to the fact-finder’s credibility determinations.  State v. Kramer, 668 N.W.2d 32, 38 (Minn. App. 2003), review denied (Minn. Nov. 18, 2003).  We will not disturb the verdict if the jury, acting with due regard for the presumption of innocence and the requirement of proof beyond a reasonable doubt, could reasonably conclude that the defendant was guilty of the charged offense.  State v. Larson, 429 N.W.2d 674, 675 (Minn. App. 1988), review denied (Minn. Nov. 8, 1988). 

            The charge of obstruction of legal process is defined as intentionally “obstruct[ing], hinder[ing], or prevent[ing] the lawful execution of any legal process, civil or criminal, or apprehension of another on a charge or conviction of a criminal offense.”  Minn. Stat. § 609.50, subd. 1(1) (2004).  “Intentionally” is defined as a mental state in which “the actor either has a purpose to do the thing or cause the result specified or believes that the act performed by the actor, if successful, will cause that result.  In addition . . . the actor must have knowledge of those facts which are necessary to make the actor’s conduct criminal and which are set forth after the word ‘intentionally.’”  Minn. Stat. § 609.02, subd. 9(3) (2004).  “[I]ntent may be determined from outward manifestations and . . . it may be inferred that a person intends the natural consequences of his actions.  Therefore . . . statements as to . . . intentions [are] in no way binding on the jury if [the] acts demonstrated a contrary intent.”  State v. Lundstrom, 285 Minn. 130, 140, 171 N.W.2d 718, 724-25 (1969). 

            In this case, the jury heard two very different accounts of the incident.  Appellant was the only witness for the defense; Officer Erickson and Deputy Bradley Barnes, a second responding officer, were called by the state.  Appellant testified that she “never touched Officer Erickson, never,” nor intended to obstruct, hinder, or prevent her son’s removal.  In her pro se supplemental brief, appellant reasserts the same arguments. 

But according to Officer Erickson, appellant pushed him on three separate occasions, causing him to fall on the snow and ice and resulting in a leg injury that required medical attention.  After appellant caused Officer Erickson to fall a second time, he testified that appellant, who was then sitting on her son, “looked at [Officer Erickson] and she said, ‘Where is your f-cking back up?  Where are they?’”  After four warnings to appellant that she could be charged with obstruction, Officer Erickson testified that he told appellant to go back into her house because she was going to be charged.  Appellant belatedly complied with Officer Erickson’s order to return to the house, and she was subsequently arrested and charged.

            Viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the conviction, we conclude that the evidence in the form of Officer Erickson’s testimony, if believed by the jury, is sufficient to sustain the conviction.