Appeal from Franklin Superior Court. Docket No: 11-1-50341-0. Date filed: 04/12/2012. Judge signing: Honorable Vic L Vanderschoor.
Janet G. Gemberling (of Janet Gemberling PS ); and Jill S. Reuter (of Jill Reuter Attorney at Law ), for appellant.
Shawn P. Sant, Prosecuting Attorney, and Frank W. Jenny II, Deputy, for respondent.
AUTHOR: Stephen M. Brown, J. WE CONCUR: Kevin M. Korsmo, C.J., Teresa C. Kulik, J.
[178 Wn.App. 175] ¶ 1 Jorge L. Quintanilla appeals his conviction and sentence for use of extortionate means to collect [178 Wn.App. 176] extensions of credit. He contends (1) sufficient evidence does not exist to support his conviction, (2) he was denied effective assistance of counsel, and (3) the sentencing court erred in failing to total his legal financial obligations (LFOs). We find no error and affirm.
¶ 2 On the surface, Mr. Quintanilla operated a seafood distribution business. According to Mr. Quintanilla, a man he briefly knew as Miguel Gonzalez (initially known to Mr. Quintanilla by other names) invested $5,000 in Mr. Quintanilla's business. Later, Enrique Salas persuaded Mr. Quintanilla to give him money ($5,000 to $17,000, the amount was disputed), ostensibly in support of Mr. Salas's import business. Some amounts received by Mr. Salas from Mr. Quintanilla were shown in bank records produced at trial. Whether or not Mr. Quintanilla considered the investment money a loan or an investment later became a fact question in a jury trial where the State produced evidence to show its theory that the transactions were made below the surface in the context of illicit narcotics distribution. In any event, according to Mr. Salas, " He [Mr. Quintanilla] invested money [in] the company and, yes, I borrowed $1000 from him." Report of Proceedings (RP) at 109. The loan was not disputed and was apparently " for the bail." Clerk's Papers (CP) at 54.
¶ 3 Mr. Gonzalez later approached Mr. Quintanilla and told him he wanted his $5,000 back. Mr. Quintanilla informed Mr. Gonzalez that he did not have it because he had in turn invested it with Mr. Salas. Then, Mr. Quintanilla, Mr. Gonzalez, and an unknown third man went to Mr. Salas's office where Mr. Quintanilla asked Mr. Salas, " Where is the money?" CP at 60. Mr. Salas explained that he had some other debts to pay off first. Mr. Salas asked Mr. Gonzalez and the other man to leave, triggering a fight between Mr. Salas and the two men in which Mr. Salas [178 Wn.App. 177] sustained multiple facial injuries and facial fractures requiring hospitalization.
¶ 4 The State charged Mr. Quintanilla with one count of first degree assault and one count of use of extortionate means to collect extensions of credit. At trial, the jury heard evidence showing Mr. Quintanilla had given Mr. Salas money to further Mr. Salas's business, but the amounts and purposes were disputed. Mr. Quintanilla considered his investment as money owed by Mr. Salas. Mr. Quintanilla identified $5,000 as having come from Mr. Gonzalez and $12,000 as having come personally from him. Mr. Salas reported having received not more than $6,000 from Mr. Quintanilla. Mr. Salas testified without dispute that Mr. Quintanilla had additionally loaned him $1,000 for personal reasons. The State elicited testimony in support of its drug distribution theory and theorized that the two men who beat Mr. Salas were Mr. Quintanilla's musclemen. Mr. Quintanilla testified that Mr. Gonzalez had indeed suggested his involvement in a drug distribution scheme between Los Angeles and the Tri-Cities, but he related that was unrelated to the assault and he had nevertheless rejected the scheme, choosing instead to report that to law enforcement after the assault.
¶ 5 In closing arguments, the State asserted the money Mr. Quintanilla gave to Mr. Salas for investment was in actuality a loan, rather than an investment given to enlist support in the drug distribution scheme.
Defense counsel did not distinguish between the sums purportedly invested or loaned to Mr. Salas, and referred to all the money as being ...