from the District Court of Ward County, North Central
Judicial District, the Honorable Richard L. Hagar, Judge.
A. Dillon, Assistant State's Attorney, Minot, ND, for
plaintiff and appellee.
Benjamin C. Pulkrabek, Mandan, ND, for defendant and
VandeWalle, Chief Justice.
1] Anthony Campbell appealed a criminal judgment after a jury
found him guilty of murder. We affirm, concluding the
district court did not abuse its discretion in its
evidentiary decisions relating to the testimony of
Campbell's expert witness and the admission of evidence
of prior bad acts.
2] According to the trial testimony of Minot police officer
David Goodman, in the morning hours of September 15, 2014,
Shannon Brunelle was found dead inside a garage stall. The
autopsy report stated Brunelle had seven lethal stab wounds
in his back and neck and had been beaten with a golf club.
Goodman testified Campbell was one of the last persons to be
seen with Brunelle before he was murdered.
3] The Minot police arrested Campbell for the murder of
Brunelle. At trial, the State submitted evidence showing
Campbell's DNA was found inside a pair of bloody athletic
shoes found inside the garage. Campbell's DNA was also
found on a broken golf club used to strike Brunelle.
4] Campbell testified at trial he had no involvement in
Brunelle's murder. Campbell also retained Ross Rolshoven,
who was offered and accepted as an expert private
investigator to testify at trial and provide his opinions of
the case. Rolshoven testified that he believed at least two
assailants were present when Brunelle was murdered. Rolshoven
also provided his opinions about the State's
investigation and a third-party's possible involvement in
Brunelle's murder. The district court sustained the
State's objections when Rolshoven testified about facts
not in evidence. After a seven-day trial, the jury found
Campbell guilty of Brunelle's murder.
5] Campbell argues the district court should have allowed his
expert to provide all of his opinions about Brunelle's
6] We review a district court's decisions relating to
expert witness testimony under an abuse of discretion
standard. Matter of O.H.W., 2009 ND 194, ¶ 15,
775 N.W.2d 73. A court abuses its discretion when it acts in
an arbitrary, unreasonable, or unconscionable manner, when it
misinterprets or misapplies the law, or when its decision is
not the product of a rational mental process leading to a
reasoned decision. Larson v. Larson, 2016 ND 76,
¶ 32, 878 N.W.2d 54.
7] Rule 702, N.D.R.Ev., allows testimony from expert
A witness who is qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill,
experience, training, or education may testify in the form of
an opinion or otherwise if the expert's scientific,
technical, or other specialized knowledge will help the trier
of fact ...