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JOHN H. MYERS v. STATE OF MISSISSIPPI

APRIL 06, 1988

JOHN H. MYERS
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI



BEFORE DAN LEE, ANDERSON AND GRIFFIN, JJ.

DAN LEE, PRESIDING JUSTICE, FOR THE COURT:

John H. Myers appeals his conviction of murder and sentence to life imprisonment. A jury in the Circuit Court of Rankin County found Myers guilty of murdering his ex-wife, Jewel Myers, in her home in Florence on December 15, 1985. He has appealed, assigning three errors. Finding none to have merit, we affirm.

FACTS

 Jewel Myers was shot and killed early on the evening of December 15, 1985. The shooting occurred at her house where appellant John Myers, Jewel's ex-husband, had come to visit many hours earlier. Her brother, Robert Davis, lived with her and was home at the time of the shooting. He heard several shots and emerged from his room to find John Myers holding what was later identified as the murder weapon. The pair struggled over the gun and Davis subdued Myers, gaining control of the gun. Davis called authorities, but Myers fled, taking Jewel Myers' car.

 Flowood Police stopped Myers about an hour later in Jewel Myers' car, at which time officers saw him discard a bag. Officers retrieved the bag and found it to contain .32-caliber shells like those used to kill Jewel Myers.

 A cab driver testified he transported Myers to Jewel Myers' house that day prior to the shooting. He and two neighbors testified that as the cab approached Mrs. Myers' house, Mr. Myers halted the cab momentarily, reached out to test-fire a

 pistol, and then the cab proceeded on in the direction of Mrs. Myers' house.

 A blood test, registered about three hours after the shooting, showed Myers' blood/alcohol level to be .25%. It was estimated that if Myers had not drunk anything between the shooting and the test, his blood/alcohol level would have been .287% at the time of the shooting; however, there was no testimony that he had been drinking at Mrs. Myers' house.

 I. The Lower Court Erred in Failing to Grant a JNOV on the Charge of Murder.

 II. The Lower Court Erred in Failing to Grant a New Trial Because the Verdict was Contrary to the Substantial Weight of the Evidence.

 Under both assigned errors, Myers argues that his intoxication negated any malice aforethought, and thus entitles him either to a judgment n.o.v. or to a new trial. Voluntary intoxication is not a defense, however. Lee v. State, 403 So. 2d 132, 134 (Miss. 1981). Thus, these assigned errors are without merit.

 III.

 Did the Trial Court Err In Failing to Grant a Mistrial When a Juror Questioned a Witness in Open Court?

 Jewel Myers died from a wound to the left temple. She had other, non-fatal wounds, however, one of which was so superficial that the bullet did not lodge in the body. Investigators found a bullet underneath the body which led to the following exchange during ...


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