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Groves v. State

March 24, 1998

GROVES
v.
STATE



Before Bridges, P.j., Herring, And Payne, JJ.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Payne, J

FREDERICK L. GROVES A/K/A FREDERICK LOUIS GROVES A/K/A "FROG", APPELLANT v. STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, APPELLEE

THIS OPINION IS NOT DESIGNATED FOR PUBLICATION AND MAY NOT BE CITED, PURSUANT TO M.R.A.P. 35-B

DATE OF JUDGMENT: 03/20/96

TRIAL JUDGE: HON. GASTON H. HEWES, JR.

COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: HARRISON COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT

NATURE OF THE CASE: CRIMINAL - FELONY

TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: TRANSFER OF CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE, COCAINE: HABITUAL OFFENDER: SENTENCED TO SERVE A TERM OF 30 YRS IN THE MDOC TO SERVE DAY FOR DAY WITHOUT HOPE OF PAROLE OR PROBATION

DISPOSITION AFFIRMED - 3/24/98

PROCEDURAL HISTORY

Frederick L. Groves was indicted by the grand jury on February 10, 1995, for the illegal transfer of cocaine. He was also indicted under the multiple offender drug statutes as well as for being a multiple felony offender. On March 20, 1996, Groves was tried before a jury and subsequently found guilty. He was sentenced to a term of thirty years without the benefit of parole, suspension of sentence or early release. Feeling aggrieved, he perfected his appeal to this Court, attacking his March 20, 1996, conviction. Having read the issues presented, we affirm the sentence below.

FACTS

Frederick Groves was scheduled for trial several times during the period between his arraignment on May 1, 1995, and trial on March 20, 1996. Groves's attorney requested a continuance because his schedule would not permit a trial until November 6, 1995. On November 6, 1995, Groves waived his right to a speedy trial and the court continued the case until December 8, 1995. Subsequently to that, the State requested a continuance in order to allow Groves to assist the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics in constructing cases against drug offenders.

On March 20, 1996, counsel for the defendant requested a second continuance, contending that he was not prepared for trial, that a conflict existed between him and the defendant, and that his schedule as an appointed counsel was such that he did not have time to discuss the case with Groves. This motion was denied. Also, prior to his trial on March 20, 1996, Groves argued that the jury pool consisted of only twenty-nine members of the community, and only one of those being black. Groves is black. This argument was overruled as well and the jury was empaneled. After his conviction, Groves was sentenced to serve a term of thirty years without parole, suspension of sentence, or eligibility for early release.

ISSUES AND PRESENTATION OF THE LAW

I. WHETHER THE TRIAL COURT ERRED WHEN NOT GRANTING A CONTINUANCE TO ALLOW COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT TO ...


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