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Young v. State

Supreme Court of Mississippi

August 1, 2013

RYAN SCOTT YOUNG a/k/a RYAN S. YOUNG a/k/a RYAN YOUNG
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI

DATE OF JUDGMENT: 11/18/2011

DESOTO COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, HON. ROBERT P. CHAMBERLIN JUDGE.

ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLANT: OFFICE OF STATE PUBLIC DEFENDER BY: HUNTER N. AIKENS GEORGE T. HOLMES DAVID CLAY VANDERBURG.

ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY: BILLY L. GORE.

DISTRICT ATTORNEY: JOHN W. CHAMPION.

BEFORE WALLER, C.J., LAMAR AND PIERCE, JJ.

LAMAR, JUSTICE.

¶1. Ryan Scott Young appeals from his convictions for felony driving under the influence (DUI), third offense, and retaliation against a public servant. Young raises four assignments of error, arguing 1) that the indictment did not include an essential element of the crime of retaliation, 2) that the trial court failed to instruct the jury on an essential element of the crime of retaliation, 3) that the evidence was insufficient to support the jury's verdict on the DUI charge, and 4) that the verdict on the DUI charge is against the weight of the evidence and he is entitled to a new trial. We find that all of Young's assignments of error are without merit, and we affirm his convictions and sentences.

FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

¶2. On April 11, 2011, around 7:00 pm, Officer Steven Hodges of the City of Southaven Police Department was conducting a traffic stop. Officer Perry Baldwin was acting as backup officer, essentially keeping a lookout to ensure nothing was coming down the road that would harm the officers or the individuals who had been detained. Baldwin testified that, as he was keeping a lookout, he saw a white car traveling eastbound. As the car passed, Baldwin saw the driver "flip him off" with his middle finger and observed that the driver had "a can of beer in the car with him." Baldwin radioed Officer Luke Shepherd, who was located at the police station farther down the road, and informed him that there was a car coming his way that he should watch out for.

¶3. As Baldwin was speaking with Shepherd, they observed the car make a U-turn and head westbound, back toward Baldwin and Hodges. As he passed by Baldwin a second time, the driver again "flipped him off" with his middle finger and Baldwin again noticed a can of beer in the car. Baldwin saw Shepherd driving his patrol car toward the white car, and later heard on the radio that Shepherd had stopped the car.

¶4. Shepherd testified that he initiated a traffic stop of the white car when the driver turned right without using a traffic signal. When Shepherd pulled him over, the driver was not cooperative. Shepherd testified that, when asked his name, the driver answered that he did not have a name. The driver eventually told Shepherd his name was Ryan Young, and Shepherd ran a check on him. Young also told Shepherd that he didn't need car insurance because he was not a citizen of the United States and that he did not need a driver's license to operate a vehicle. Shepherd testified that he could smell alcohol while he was speaking with Young and that he could see an open can of beer inside the car. After speaking with Young, Shepherd asked him to step out of the car and took him into custody.

¶5. Officer Jonathan Fletcher also was present during the stop. Fletcher testified that, after Young stepped out of the car, he stated he had been with friends drinking several beers that day.[1] Fletcher also testified that he had inventoried the contents of Young's vehicle after he was taken into custody and had found several empty beer cans in the car, as well as one half-full beer in the center console and a green leafy substance consistent in appearance with marijuana.

ΒΆ6. Shepherd testified that he transported Young to the police station. W hen they arrived, Shepherd noticed that Young's pants were wet and there was liquid at his feet. Shepherd testified that Young informed him that he had urinated on himself. Shepherd then administered field sobriety tests to Young. Shepherd offered Young the opportunity to take a breathalyzer test, which Young refused. Shepherd concluded that Young had failed the field sobriety tests and determined, based on his training and ...


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