PEOPLE OF MI V CHARLIE J LESTERAnnotate this Case
STATE OF MICHIGAN
COURT OF APPEALS
PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF MICHIGAN,
December 4, 1998
LC No. 96-006616
CHARLIE J. LESTER,
Before: Sawyer, P.J., and Wahls and Hoekstra, JJ.
Defendant appeals as of right his conviction for carjacking, MCL 750.529a; MSA 28.797(a),
and felony-firearm, MCL 750.227b; MSA 28.424(2). Defendant was sentenced as a second offense
habitual offender. We affirm.
Defendant’s convictions arise out of a 1996 carjacking that took place in Detroit. The two
complainants identified defendant as the person who pointed a gun at them and told them to get out of
their car. They were able to view their assailant at close range for a number of minutes. The
complainants gave consistent descriptions of defendant at the time of the crime and subsequently
identified defendant in a lineup. The trial court found that identification was the central question for trial
and found no reasonable doubt that defendant was the assailant. After sentencing, the court denied
defendant’s motion for new trial.
On appeal, defendant asserts that his conviction is not supported by sufficient evidence and is
against the great weight of the evidence. We disagree. When determining whether sufficient evidence
has been presented to sustain a conviction, a court must view the evidence in a light most favorable to
the prosecution and determine whether any rational finder of fact could have found that the essential
elements of the crime were proven beyond a reasonable doubt. People v Wolfe, 440 Mich 508, 515;
489 NW2d 748 (1992), amended 441 Mich 1201; 489 NW2d 748 (1992). The grant or denial of a
motion for new trial on the ground that the verdict is against the great weight of the evidence is a matter
addressed to the sound discretion of the trial judge, whose exercise of that discretion will not be
disturbed on appeal unless a clear abuse is shown. People v Lemmon, 456 Mich 625; 576 NW2d
129 (1998); Harrigan v Ford Motor Co, 159 Mich App 776, 788; 406 NW2d 917 (1987).
Here, the evidence of the complaining witnesses was clearly sufficient to identify defendant as
the person guilty of the crimes. There is no showing that the trial court abused its discretion in denying a
new trial on great weight of the evidence grounds. Any inconsistency in the complainants’ descriptions
were minor, and do not present grounds for reversal. The evidence presented established that
defendant was guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
/s/ David H. Sawyer
/s/ Myron H. Wahls
/s/ Joel P. Hoekstra