Public Safety

Following U.S. Supreme Court ruling, sentence for Charles City serial burglar reduced

He's sentenced to 20 years after life sentence overturned

A Charles City man, sentenced to life as an armed career criminal in 2014 after one of his burglary binges ended in the murder of a Clarksville grocer, was resentenced Wednesday to only 20 years following a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on Iowa’s burglary laws.

Randy Patrie, 44, convicted of possession of firearms by a felon and possession of sawed-off shotguns, initially was sentenced under the Armed Career Criminal Act. That allows for additional prison time in firearm offenses when a defendant has three or more convictions for violent felonies, which includes burglaries.

Patrie, who had five convictions for burglaries and two for thefts, appealed the life sentence. And in 2016, the Supreme Court ruled in another Iowa case that the state’s burglary law was too broad and didn’t qualify as “crimes of violence” to get the armed career criminal enhancement.

The court’s decision didn’t affect the portion of a 2014 ruling by U.S. District Chief Judge Linda Reade that she found by a preponderance of evidence that Patrie “willfully, deliberately, maliciously and with premeditation murdered” Kenneth Gallmeyer, 70.

Gallmeyer, a retired Clarksville grocer, was found dead with a gunshot wound to his head Oct. 4, 2012, according to court documents. The weapon used was a .410 sawed-off shotgun, which Patrie owned. The burglary and killing occurred Sept. 25, 2012, but Gallmeyer’s body wasn’t found until authorities a week later conducted a welfare check.

Reade Wednesday reasserted her previous ruling, which pointed out there was evidence Patrie used the sawed-off shotgun in connection with the burglary and that Gallmeyer’s death resulted from the commission of a burglary. Patrie was never charged with the death itself.

Patrie declined to make a statement before Reade imposed the 20-year sentence.

Reade said it was “no secret” she would impose more time if she could.

She also ordered Patrie serve three years of supervised release following his prison time.

Steve Swift, Patrie’s attorney, argued in 2014 during sentencing that Patrie should receive only 10 years for each of the two charges. He argued against Patrie being sentenced as a career criminal.

ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW ADVERTISEMENT

At the 2014 hearing, Marti Hornsby, daughter of Gallmeyer who lives in Florida, said in she and her family endured months of torment over not knowing who killed her father. It wasn’t until a year later they found out who may have killed him.

“My dad lost his life because of Randy Patrie’s life of crime,” she said at the time.

After Wednesday’s hearing, Reade, in an unusual turn, went into the gallery to talk with Gallmeyer’s family.

The family declined to comment later.

l Comments: (319) 398-8318; trish.mehaffey@thegazette.com

Give us feedback

We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

Or if you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.