Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

JEROLD WAYNE SMITH v. STATE OF MISSISSIPPI

APRIL 20, 1988

JEROLD WAYNE SMITH
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI



BEFORE HAWKINS, P.J., SULLIVAN AND ZUCCARO, JJ.

HAWKINS, PRESIDING JUSTICE, FOR THE COURT:

Jerold Wayne Smith has appealed from his conviction of burglary in the circuit court of the First Judicial District of Harrison County and sentence to seven years imprisonment.

One of Smith's assignments of error is that the circuit judge should have sustained his motion for a directed verdict because at the most he was only an accessory after the fact. Finding this issue dispositive, we reverse and render judgment discharging him.

 FACTS

 Shortly after midnight on January 28, 1985, Hudson's Salvage Center in Gulfport was burglarized and $1,100 worth of jewelry was stolen. The burglary set off an alarm and Gerald L. Nelson, a city police officer on patrol, responded. He observed that a dark green Oldsmobile was in front of the Salvage Center, a glass door to the building was broken, and a female was leaving the building. She got into the car, and it sped off. Nelson gave chase, but the car got out of his sight. The car crashed into a tree a few blocks away. Police officers arrived and searched the car, finding several cases of jewelry items on the floorboard of the passenger side.

 While they were at the scene, Smith came out of the dark with his hands up and said, "I give up, I am hurt." He told the officers that he was the driver of the car. Smith was placed under arrest.

 Catherine Mae (Cat) Wilson was arrested later that night.

 The grand jury indicted Smith and Wilson for burglary on April 22, 1985. Upon motion the defendants were granted separate trials. Wilson pled guilty and was sentenced to seven years imprisonment.

 Smith was brought to trial on September 10. Just prior to trial Smith attempted to plead guilty upon an agreement he had with the State to forego sentencing him as a habitual offender under Miss. Code Ann. 99-19-81. When Smith gave the circuit judge his version of what transpired that night, however, the court refused to accept his guilty plea. The case proceeded to trial, the State offered testimony essentially as above set forth, and rested.

 The circuit judge overruled Smith's motion for a directed verdict.

 Wilson testified in Smith's defense. She was the only defense witness, but her testimony as to what transpired is uncontradicted.

 According to Wilson, on the night of the burglary she and Smith had left a local bar where he had won a pool game tournament. As they left she asked him to drive her by the salvage center, telling him that she wanted to look at some clothing on display. When they got there she got out of the car, and saw jewelry on display. She then decided to break the glass and steal the jewelry. She returned to the car and asked Smith for something to break the glass window. He told her no. She then looked on the back floor of the car and found either a tire tool, or some kind of iron bar. As she took the tool out of the car, Smith told her, "Don't," and also told her he was leaving. She paid no attention to him, and smashed the window. She then swept some jewelry up and started back to the car. Smith was in the process of driving off, and she had to run to catch the car and get in.

 They sped away and crashed into the tree some several blocks distant. Wilson got some of the jewelry from the car and left. The officers later arrested her.

 In addition to overruling the motion for a directed verdict when the State rested, the circuit judge also refused a defense instruction requested at the close of all ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.