Court of Appeals of Texas, Fourth District, San Antonio
the 379th Judicial District Court, Bexar County, Texas Trial
Court Nos. 2017CR11793 & 2017CR11790 Honorable Ron
Rangel, Judge Presiding
Sitting: Sandee Bryan Marion, Chief Justice, Rebeca C.
Martinez, Justice, Luz Elena D. Chapa, Justice.
C. MARTINEZ, JUSTICE.
convicted Humberto Ramirez of two counts of aggravated
assault with a deadly weapon. On appeal, Ramirez contends the
evidence is legally and factually insufficient to support his
conviction. We affirm.
27, 2017, Ramirez attended a family party at which a fight
broke out. In connection with the fight, Ramirez was charged
with four counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon
for allegedly stabbing with a knife: Gabriela Ramirez
("Gabriela"), his wife; Eleazar Rios, Ramirez's
father-in-law; David Bonds, Ramirez's son-in-law; and
Raymond Deleon, Ramirez's brother-in-law. A jury found
Ramirez guilty on two counts for the aggravated assaults of
Rios and Bonds and acquitted Ramirez on two counts for the
alleged assaults of Gabriela and Deleon. Ramirez was
sentenced to a term of two years' confinement and now
contends in a single issue that the evidence is legally and
factually insufficient to support his
convictions. He argues that the "inconsistent
verdicts" "shed light" on the insufficiency of
the evidence. According to Ramirez, the jury, in finding
Ramirez guilty on two counts and acquitting him on two other
counts, must have believed either: (1) Ramirez did not use a
deadly weapon, or (2) he acted in self-defense.
of Review and Applicable Law
standard for reviewing sufficiency of the evidence in a
criminal appeal is the Jackson v. Virginia legal
sufficiency standard. See Braughton v. State, 569
S.W.3d 592, 607-08 (Tex. Crim. App. 2018); see also
Brooks, 323 S.W.3d at 895 (citing Jackson v.
Virginia, 443 U.S. 307, 319 (1979)). Under this
standard, we examine the evidence in the light most favorable
to the jury's verdict to determine whether any rational
trier of fact could have found the essential elements of the
offense beyond a reasonable doubt. Jackson, 443 U.S.
at 319; Brooks, 323 S.W.3d at 899. We consider only
whether or not the fact finder reached a rational conclusion.
See Morgan v. State, 501 S.W.3d 84, 89 (Tex. Crim.
App. 2016) (noting that the appellate court's role
"is restricted to guarding against the rare occurrence
when a fact finder does not act rationally") (quoting
Isassi v. State, 330 S.W.3d 633, 638 (Tex. Crim.
legal sufficiency standard "recognizes the trier of
fact's role as the sole judge of the weight and
credibility of the evidence." Adames v. State,
353 S.W.3d 854, 861 (Tex. Crim. App. 2011). We may not
reweigh the evidence or substitute our judgment for that of
the jury. Orellana v. State, 381 S.W.3d 645, 653
(Tex. App.-San Antonio 2012, pet. ref'd) (citing King
v. State, 29 S.W.3d 556, 562 (Tex. Crim. App. 2000)). We
also must give deference to the jury's ability "to
draw reasonable inferences from basic facts to ultimate
facts." Jackson, 443 U.S. at 319. "Each
fact need not point directly and independently to the guilt
of the appellant, as long as the cumulative force of all the
incriminating circumstances is sufficient to support the
conviction." Hooper v. State, 214 S.W.3d 9, 13
(Tex. Crim. App. 2007) (citing Johnson v. State, 871
S.W.2d 183, 186 (Tex. Crim. App. 1993)). "Circumstantial
evidence is as probative as direct evidence in establishing
the guilt of an actor, and circumstantial evidence alone can
be sufficient to establish guilt." Id. (citing
Guevara v. State, 152 S.W.3d 45, 49 (Tex. Crim. App.
2004)). Any inconsistencies in the evidence must be resolved
in favor of the jury's verdict. Gonzales v.
State, 330 S.W.3d 691, 694 (Tex. App.-San Antonio 2010,
no pet.) (citing Curry v. State, 30 S.W.3d 394, 406
(Tex. Crim. App. 2000)).