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Bennett v. State

March 23, 1999

DERRICK BENNETT APPELLANT
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI APPELLEES



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Southwick, J.

DATE OF JUDGMENT: 10/15/1997

TRIAL JUDGE: HON. W. SWAN YERGER

COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: HINDS COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT

DISTRICT ATTORNEY: EDWARD J. PETERS

NATURE OF THE CASE: CRIMINAL - FELONY

TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: MURDER - GUILTY; LIFE SENTENCE MDOC

DISPOSITION: AFFIRMED - 03/23/99

MOTION FOR REHEARING FILED:

CERTIORARI FILED:

MANDATE ISSUED:

BEFORE THOMAS, P.J., LEE, AND SOUTHWICK, JJ.

¶1. Derrick Bennett was convicted of murder by a Hinds County Circuit Court jury. On appeal he argues that the trial court erred in restricting his impeachment use of prior convictions of two of the State's witnesses, in admitting evidence of past criminal acts by Bennett, in denying his motions for a directed verdict or a new trial, and in holding defense counsel in contempt. We find no reversible error and affirm.

FACTS

¶2. Sheree Glickman was found dead on the morning of December 25, 1995. She had been shot through the left side of her chest. The bullet traveled through her chest cavity and into her right arm. Her body was in the driver's seat of a red Chevrolet Berretta which had run off the road and into a fence. A "crack pipe" was also found in the vehicle.

¶3. Beatrice Wiggins testified that Glickman had asked her about buying $100 worth of crack cocaine as an illicit Christmas gift for Glickman's husband. A heavy price was soon extracted for this conduct. Wiggins flagged down Bennett, whom she knew as "Red," so that Glickman could purchase the cocaine. Rather than make the exchange, however, Bennett drove off with Glickman's money. Glickman angrily rammed Bennett's car. She initially continued to follow Bennett as he drove away, but since her eleven-year-old son was sleeping in the car, she returned in order to leave him with Wiggins. Glickman then resumed her pursuit. According to Wiggins, this occurred about 2:40 a.m. Christmas day. She heard a gunshot some ten minutes later.

¶4. Other individuals become important to the story. Nekeith Newsome was in the car with Bennett. He testified that Wiggins flagged down the car, asked for cocaine, and that Bennett got out to discuss the matter. Newsome did not know what was said, but after Bennett returned to the car Wiggins followed and told him not to "do her [Glickman] like that." Newsome agreed that Glickman rammed Bennett's car with her own, but that Bennett got away and went to the home of Josh Wilder.

¶5. While at Wilder's home, Daryl Davis came in and bought drugs from Bennett. He then went outside. Later, Glickman drove up. According to Davis, Glickman asked if she could buy crack cocaine. Davis went inside Wilder's home, allegedly bought cocaine, then returned it to Glickman. At her request, Davis gave her a crack pipe to use. Davis then got into her car and both drove off. He testified that while they were driving, someone in another car pulled alongside and fired into their car. Glickman lost control, went off the road, and ran into a fence. She later died from the gunshot wound. Davis recognized Kenny Brown as the driver and Bennett as the shooter. Davis got out of the wrecked car and was allegedly going for help when he was picked up by Bennett and Brown. With Bennett still displaying the gun, Davis agreed not to reveal what had happened.

ΒΆ6. Kenny Brown's version of what happened begins at Wilder's home when Bennett and Newsome arrived, which would have been after Glickman first tried to purchase cocaine and had rammed Bennett's vehicle, but before she herself went to Wilder's and picked up Daryl Davis. Brown stated that Bennett told him to drive Bennett to get some money from a lady. Brown went where he was told. He eventually pulled alongside Glickman's car, and Bennett fired into it. Glickman's car ran off the road and into a fence. Brown ...


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