WATERLOO — The Iowa Supreme Court has sided with a Waterloo man who is seeking to overturn a sexual abuse conviction.
David Michael Powers was convicted in 2011 of abusing a girl beginning when she was 7 years old and continuing until she went to school officials at age 13.
Now 73, Powers has challenged his conviction and sought evidence of a 2011 claim the girl made that she had been sexually abused by a gang. Those allegations, which happened after Powers was convicted and before he was sentenced — didn’t lead to arrests.
Court records indicate the girl and her father declined to pursue charges, and Powers’ attorney wanted to use the information to allege the girl made false sex abuse allegations against others in asking for a new trial.
But a district court judge ruled against a request by Powers’ attorney to get copies of the police investigative reports in the gang assault case, ruling the information wouldn’t have changed anything about Powers’ sentencing.
In a decision filed Friday, the Iowa Supreme Court ruled Powers’ attorney should be allowed to review the reports because they could lead to admissible evidence.
Justice Edward Mansfield submitted a dissenting opinion, arguing the gang assault case wasn’t newly discovered evidence because it allegedly happened after Powers’ trial.