This opinion will be unpublished and

may not be cited except as provided by

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




State of Minnesota,



Leslie Leroy Street,


Filed June 22, 1999


Shumaker, Judge

Olmsted County District Court

File No. K2-97-1262

Mike Hatch, Attorney General, Robert A. Stanich, Assistant Attorney General, 1400 NCL Tower, 445 Minnesota Street, St. Paul, MN 55101; and

Raymond F. Schmitz, Olmsted County Attorney, 151 Fourth Street SE, Rochester, MN 55904-3712 (for respondent)

John M. Stuart, State Public Defender, Theodora Gaitas, Assistant Public Defender, Suite 600, 2829 University Avenue SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414 (for appellant)

Considered and decided by Short, Presiding Judge, Peterson, Judge, and Shumaker, Judge.



Appellant Leslie Leroy Street challenges his convictions of domestic assault and terroristic threats, alleging that the state did not establish that he had the requisite state of mind to commit the charged offenses. We affirm.


Mary Angelici and Leslie Street's romantic relationship ended after three years, but the couple continued to share a residence. During their time together, Street often ranted, raved, and screamed about abortions, newspaper articles, Hillary Clinton, God, and Vietnam. He was better when he took his medication, but he did not do so regularly. He also had a drinking problem that worsened over time.

For two weeks in April 1997, Street acted more erratically than usual. He threatened to kill Angelici, saying that he was her executioner. He showed her knives and said he would cut her genitals. Without provocation, he threw her onto the bed, choked her, and told her, "If you were a soldier, I'd kill you."

On April 25, 1997, Angelici noticed that the head had been chopped off her statute of the Virgin Mary. When she asked Street about it he said, "Sometimes you lose your head." Street also told Angelici that she should be afraid of dying. During mid-morning, Street began breaking things in the house. He carried a chisel and a sheetrock knife. Although Street did not expressly threaten her, Angelici was frightened because Street's actions were bizarre and he was shaking uncontrollably. She fled the house and called the police.

The police responded and first encountered Angelici outside in her bathrobe. She was shaken and panicky. The police then went to the residence. Street came to the door with the chisel in his hand, and he refused to drop it even when the officers drew their guns. Instead, he invited the officers to shoot him. The police were eventually able to arrest him.

After a trial, a jury found Street guilty of domestic assault and terroristic threats. This appeal followed.


Street contends that the evidence is insufficient to support the convictions. In determining whether evidence in the record is sufficient to support an appellant's convictions, this court views that evidence in the light most favorable to the jury's verdict and assumes that the jury believed the state's witnesses and disbelieved any evidence to the contrary. State v. Spaeth, 552 N.W.2d 187, 192 (Minn. 1996).

When evaluating the sufficiency of the evidence supporting a conviction, review is limited to whether a jury could reasonably have found the defendant guilty of the charged offense. State v. Davidson, 481 N.W.2d 51, 58 (Minn. 1992).


The Minnesota terroristic threats statute provides:

Whoever threatens, directly or indirectly, to commit any crime of violence with purpose to terrorize another * * * or in a reckless disregard of the risk of causing such terror or inconvenience may be sentenced to imprisonment * * *.

Minn. Stat. § 609.713, subd. 1 (1996).

To be found guilty of making terroristic threats, a defendant must (1) make a threat; (2) to commit an act of violence; (3) with the purpose of terrorizing another. See State v. Schweppe, 306 Minn. 395, 399-400 237 N.W.2d 609, 613-14 (1975) (analyzing elements of terroristic threats statute as issue of first impression).

A threat consists of a "declaration of an intention to injure another * * * by some unlawful act" and is examined in the context in which it is made. Id. at 399, 237 N.W2d at 613. A terroristic threat must be communicated directly to a victim, or, alternatively, a defendant must know or have reason to know that the threat will be communicated to the victim. Id. at 400-01, 237 N.W.2d at 614. It is not necessary that the defendant possess the immediate capability of carrying out his threat. See State v. Marchand, 410 N.W.2d 912, 915 (Minn. App. 1987) (finding defendant intended to cause fear in victim even though he did not have immediate means to carry out threat), review denied (Minn. Oct. 21, 1987). But it must be the defendant's "aim, objective, or intention" to cause extreme fear through the threat. Schweppe, 306 Minn. at 397, 237 N.W.2d at 614. Although not an essential element of the offense, a victim's reaction to the threat is circumstantial evidence of intent. Marchand, 410 N.W.2d at 915. As a subjective state of mind, intent can be established through reasonable inferences from the circumstances surrounding the incident. Schweppe, 306 Minn. at 401, 237 N.W.2d at 614.

The record demonstrates that Street's conduct was violent and destructive and his words sometimes were direct, and at other times indirect, threats to kill Angelici. She was panic-stricken and called the police because she thought Street would carry out his threats. Photographs in evidence showed the result of Street's rampage in the home, and the police officers corroborated Angelici's testimony about her fear of Street.

On these facts, the jury could reasonably have found appellant guilty of terroristic threats. See State v. Webb, 440 N.W.2d 426, 430 (Minn. 1989) (stating "jury normally is in the best position to evaluate circumstantial evidence, and * * * their verdict is entitled to due deference"); State v. Reichenberger, 289 Minn. 75, 79-80, 182 N.W.2d 692, 695 (1970) (recognizing weighing credibility of witness is sole function of jury); see also State v. Lakin, 378 N.W.2d 101, 103 (Minn. App. 1985) (concluding defense's cross-examination sufficiently pointed out witness's inconsistencies and jury left to resolve conflicts), review denied (Minn. Jan. 17, 1986).

The jury weighed the evidence and decided that Street intended to cause extreme fear in Angelici by making threatening statements to her. Marchand, 410 N.W.2d at 915. Thus, the evidence is sufficient to support Street's conviction of terroristic threats. See Webb, 440 N.W.2d at 430 (recognizing review limited to whether evidence, viewed in light most favorable to verdict, supports verdict).


To be found guilty of domestic assault, a defendant must commit an act against a household member with intent to cause fear of immediate bodily harm or death. See Minn. Stat. § 609.2242, subd. 1 (1) (1996).

Street's argument is that the state did not prove that he had the requisite state of mind to commit this offense. He seems to be arguing that he did not have the capacity to form the requisite intent. Because appellant did not raise a defense of mental illness during trial, that argument is not properly before this court.[1] But intent can be raised as an issue without asserting a mental illness defense.

Intent may be inferred from all the circumstances. The jury decided that Street was able to form the necessary intent. Looking at Street's actions and words, it was reasonable for the jury to reject Street's claim that he could not control his behavior. See State v. Ostrem, 535 N.W.2d 916, 924 (Minn. 1995) (a person's conduct before and after an offense may be used to infer a person's criminal intent); State v. Provost, 490 N.W.2d 93, 104 (Minn. 1992) (stating that it is the fact-finder's job to evaluate the defendant's words and actions to determine specific intent). We find the evidence supports the jury verdict.


[1] See Roby v. State, 547 N.W.2d 354, 357 (Minn. 1996) (holding this court will not consider matters not argued and considered in the court below).