Steve Schneider
Steve Schneider

August 3, 2017

A 39-year-old Carroll man’s sex-abuse convictions withstood this week his latest challenge to overturn them when a judge rejected his claims that his defense attorneys failed to properly defend him.

Steve Schneider was convicted in 2014 for six felonies for having sexual intercourse with his 13-year-old niece and was sentenced to up to 40 years in prison.

He is held at the Fort Dodge Correctional Facility and is set to be released in 2032 when he is 55.

Schneider — in his request for post-conviction relief — claimed in a court trial in February that his attorneys failed to amend their defense strategy when the felony charges against him changed just before the original trial and that they did not seek sworn depositions before the trial of those who testified against him, among other complaints about the attorneys.

“The court concludes that the attorneys who represented him in the above-described criminal proceedings performed well within prevailing professional norms,” District Judge Dale Ruigh wrote in his Monday ruling. “No reasonable probability exists that ... the outcome of Mr. Schneider’s criminal trial would have been different.”

Schneider has hired a total of three law firms so far at different points in the process to defend and free him. They have asked local judges three times for a new trial and made a further three appeals to the Iowa Supreme Court, all of which have been denied.

It’s unclear whether Schneider will continue to challenge his convictions.