Wiggins v. DelawareAnnotate this Case
In 2018, Appellant Darren Wiggins was arrested for possession of drugs; a vial containing an amber liquid with brown chunks suspended in the liquid. The State’s chemist tested the amber liquid, which tested positive for phencyclidine (“PCP”); she did not test or otherwise identify the brown chunks. The chemist also weighed the liquid PCP and brown chunks together and determined that they weighed 17.651 grams. The chemist did not weigh the liquid or the brown chunks separately. At trial, the State presented no evidence regarding the nature of the brown chunks or their relation to the liquid PCP other than their co-location within the same vial. Nonetheless, the jury found Wiggins guilty of Aggravated Possession of PCP under Delaware’s Uniform Controlled Substances Act. Relevant here, possession of 15 grams or more of PCP, or of any mixture containing any such substance, was classified as a Class B Felony and carried a minimum sentence of two years at Level V incarceration. The parties’ sole focus in this appeal is on whether a rational jury could have concluded that the State met its burden to prove that the liquid PCP and brown chunks in Wiggins’s vial constituted a “mixture” under the statutory scheme. The Delaware Supreme Court held that the meaning of “mixture” within Delaware’s statutory scheme required a showing that the mixture was marketable or usable. As the State presented no evidence concerning what the brown chunks were, that they were in any way associated with liquid PCP, or that they were conventionally sold or used with PCP mixtures, the State made no showing that the liquid PCP and unidentified brown chunks were a marketable or usable drug mixture. Therefore, the Court vacated the conviction for Aggravated Possession of PCP and remanded for sentencing for the lesser-included offense of Misdemeanor Possession of PCP.