State Of Louisiana VS Michael Desmond Craft

Download as PDF NOT DESIGNATED FOR PUBLICATION STATE OF LOUISIANA COURT OF APPEAL FIRST CIRCUIT 2008 KA 0045 STATE OF LOUISIANA VERSUS W MICHAEL DESMOND CRAFT Judgment On Appeal Rendered May 2 2008 from the 22nd Judicial District Court In and For the Parish of St Tammany Trial Court No 423 613 Honorable William J Burris Judge Presiding Walter P Reed Counsel for District State of Louisiana Attorney Covington LA Appellee Kathryn W Landry Special Appeals Counsel Baton Rouge LA Prentice L White Counsel for Defendant Appellant Louisiana Michael Desmond Craft Baton Appellate Project Rouge LA BEFORE WHIPPLE GUIDRY AND HUGHES JJ HUGHES J Defendant Michael information with a The jury hearing the defendant court was guilty proceedings against adjudicated was a and the defendant fourth to The State Following a habitual offender felony subsequently sentenced the defendant tried before was charged as of violation of LSA a plea of not guilty a bill charged by was of cocaine possession jury determined the defendant instituted habitual offender The trial of one count Defendant entered R S 40 967 C Craft Desmond a term of thirty two years at hard labor Defendant 1 It jury s appeals citing the following assignments of error manifest was the time the at the court to accept the because the alleged in the pipe was in the form of dust at the pipe and this dust was no time of trial The district court committed a sentencing error by failing Instead it sentence the defendant on the instant conviction reserved its multiple a was police discovered longer visible to for the district guilty verdict against the defendant cocaine substance that 2 error sentence offender After applicable not adjudicated Therefore multiple offender defective and until it as well the as we to be s defendant adjudication his properly before this considering the defendant law the defendant s subsequent sentence a as are Court assignments of affirm his conviction habitual offender and error the adjudication and sentence FACTS On December 8 2006 Department response the to was a dispatched George Skinner of the Slidell Police Officer to the Kangaroo report of a shoplifting in progress While dispatcher advised that the suspect store and entered his vehicle in the information Texaco was a on en Voters Road in route to the black male who had exited the parking lot The dispatcher relayed indicating that the suspect was in the process of leaving 2 scene Officer Skinner arrived When he arrived call lit were Officer Skinner then advised the vehicle vehicle there subject According more on only than to two seat vehicle in the one was as Officer Skinner he and the running the defendant requested the times but the defendant failed to up to the defendant lot parking reverse s to step defendant lights He to exit his shined his vehicle bottle of vodka and a of his out comply and ordered the defendant vehicle s Officer Skinner observed the front within five minutes of the initial up behind the vehicle and blocked it later identified flashlight into the defendant vehicle scene was pulled Officer Skinner walked chips the Officer Skinner the vehicle to According on a out of the bag of potato After the defendant exited of the defendant s vehicle his vehicle Officer Skinner asked the defendant to step to the back of his vehicle where he then asked the defendant if he had any weapons on him Officer Skinner detained the defendant placed him in handcuffs and then patted him down for weapons in order to ensure At this Police Officer Theriot detained the defendant in the parking while Officer Skinner regarding parking the Jeff Theriot went inside the defendant s Theriot was to going proceeded which is arrest pat down in order a more prohibit to speak with the clerk store to to be arrested for conduct any contraband from defendant s left front pants device on a the other end to being incident a a simple the to weapons taken into the small metal pocket The pipe had the shoplifting search a to he advised Officer thorough search than During the search Officer Theriot retrieved a of the When Officer Skinner returned shoplifting complaint Theriot that the defendant and also lot where the defendant had been detained Officer safety Slidell Officer point Department arrived lot officer jail the object from metal filter on one end prevent the holder s fingers from being 3 A charred residue burned also visible was and Theriot both testified that this with the was also use As of crack cocaine pipe was sent to tested the pipe According to type of pipe a was result of this commonly associated discovery the defendant Tammany Parish Sheriff s Office Crime the St Deputy Harry O Neal who Lab the filter Officers Skinner of crack cocaine charged with possession The on was accepted expert drug analyst as an Deputy O Neal both he tests performed on the pipe revealed the presence of cocaine Defendant did not testify trial at Following his conviction for possession of cocaine the habitual offender proceedings against instant conviction for possession the defendant were a conviction for under docket number 204 602 simple burglary entered on thirty two May Following the hearing fourth During this hearing prior convictions felony theft entered convictions for 12 May on years at 18 1992 conviction for a 1997 under docket number 268 858 the trial court adjudicated the defendant felony habitual offender and sentenced the defendant two which simple burglary entered 1992 under docket number 209 620 and November 16 have his to Twenty Second Judicial District Court in St Tammany also from the Parish and included on seeking of cocaine enhanced the State introduced evidence of the defendant s State instituted to a as term a of hard labor SUFFICIENCY OF THE EVIDENCE In his first assignment evidence is insufficient to Specifically convict a of error support his conviction for possession of cocaine the defendant argues that person of the defendant contends that the possession is a miniscule inappropriate 4 trace of cocaine used and shocks one s sense to of Defendant argues the justice have been guilty verdict a for reasonable verdict in this only possession Louisiana Revised Statute 40 967 knowingly intentionally possessed or classified possessed is a the possession admissions v of controlled mere traces or dangerous substance accused knows an of a controlled possession the defendant as substance he a by direct and circumstantial evidence narcotic may be proven A conviction for paraphernalia C requires proof that a Whether in Schedule II of drug should case dangerous substance residue of the substance may rest on absent even by the defendant which might constitute guilty knowledge State McMooain 95 2103 pp 5 6 La 680 So 2d 1370 1 Cir 9 27 96 App 1373 74 In a evaluating conviction light an whether evidence is appellate favorable most to found the defendant 821 Jackson L Ed 2d 560 It is prosecution guilty beyond 443 Virginia v a US to support viewing the evidence in the determine court must the constitutionally sufficient any rational trier of fact could have LSA CCr P reasonable doubt 307 99 S Ct 319 2781 art 2789 61 1979 that the crack pipe undisputed recovered from the defendant searched incidental testified that he to his scraped s arrest out a containing the residue left front pants for pocket Further shoplifting he as was Deputy was being O Neal portion of the lining of the inside of the pipe seized from the defendant This scraping tested positive for the presence of cocame Despite the defendant support a conviction for allows for such So 2d at a finding 1373 74 State s argument against using possession of cocaine See State v the v McMooain Leblanc 2004 1032 5 traces or residue to jurisprudence clearly 95 2103 at pp 5 6 680 p 4 La App 1 Cir 897 So 2d 736 12 17 04 So 2d 1063 As 2005 as a thirteenth fact State solely rests Accordingly we 163 254 901 L Ed 2d 231 constitutionally precluded from acting we are evidence in criminal give to the sound discretion of the trier of on 00 17 10 Mitchell 99 3342 p 8 La v 772 So 2d 78 83 find the evidence supports the defendant s conviction of cocaine possession This 126 S Ct 905 juror in assessing what weight that determination cases for court reviewing a 546 U S denied cert La 4 29 05 739 writ denied 2005 0150 of error is without merit assignment SENTENCING In his second assignment of error the defendant him erred in failing reserved his instant conviction sentencing until the defendant to sentence Defendant maintains that the trial offender and adjudication Defendant cites the trial for l5 529 1 D 3 to possession and adjudication sentence provides was court adjudicated failure s in do so to multiple offender a renders his habitual support his contention that the defendant sentence of to and instead defective applicable authority failure court s conviction no on sentence argues the trial court cocaine renders I defective Rather on his his underlying habitual we note offender LSA R S pertinent part When the judge finds that the defendant has been convicted of a prior felony or felonies the shall court sentence him to the punishment prescribed in this Section and shall vacate the previous sentence if already imposed deducting from the new sentence the time actually served under the sentence so vacated Emphasis added The trial 1 The plain wording of the court sentence cases cited the defendant counts imposes on his no such underlying requirement conviction that the prior to address situations wherein the ten year cleansing period was at issued a single sentence when a defendant was convicted of by the defendant issue and where the trial court multiple statute Neither scenario is at issue in the present 6 case adjudicating and Accordingly there is enhanced sentence sentencing no error as a the defendant in the trial habitual court as s a habitual action of offender only imposing offender for the defendant s an instant conviction of possession of cocaine This assignment CONVICTION of error is without merit HABITUAL AND SENTENCE AFFIRMED 7 OFFENDER ADJUDICATION