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Evans v. State

Court of Appeals of Mississippi

March 4, 2014

JERICA EVANS, APPELLANT
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, APPELLEE

DATE OF JUDGMENT: 04/13/2012.

YAZOO COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, HON. JANNIE M. LEWIS, TRIAL JUDGE.

FOR APPELLANT: VICKI L. GILLIAM.

FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, BY: LAURA HOGAN TEDDER.

BEFORE IRVING, P.J., BARNES, ROBERTS AND JAMES, JJ. LEE, C.J., IRVING AND GRIFFIS, P.JJ., ISHEE, ROBERTS, CARLTON, MAXWELL, FAIR AND JAMES, JJ., CONCUR.

OPINION

Page 724

BARNES, J.:

¶1. A Yazoo County Circuit Court jury found Jerica Evans guilty of accessory before the fact to the sexual battery of her cousin, Glenda Hall.[1] The trial judge sentenced Evans to twenty-five years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC), with five years suspended and five years of supervised probation. Evans now appeals her conviction and sentence, raising issues regarding the sufficiency and weight of the evidence, and whether the trial court erred in limiting the defense's closing argument. Finding no error, we affirm.

STATEMENT OF THE FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

¶2. In 2009, Evans, who was seventeen years old, and her younger brother were living with their grandmother, Debra Dillan, in Yazoo City, Mississippi. They were placed in Dillan's home by the Department of Human Services, and had been living there approximately two years. Also living with Dillan were two of her grandchildren (Evans's first cousins), Glenda and Antoine Hall, who were eight and six years old, respectively. They had been living with Dillan for about six years while their mother, Gina Hall, was living in Jackson, Mississippi, trying to " get on her feet." Additionally, a twenty-eight-year-old man named Tommie Lee Jones had recently moved into Dillan's house and was sleeping on the couch.[2] Dillan, however, did not know Jones's true age at the time because Jones presented himself to Dillan as a seventeen-year-old student.

¶3. Around the date of April 17, 2009, Dillan called her daughter, Gina, to come get her two children because " Jerica was causing trouble." Gina drove to Yazoo City and picked up her children. Upon returning home, she smelled a foul odor coming from Glenda's " vagina area." She told Glenda to bathe, and noticed an abnormal discharge in Glenda's underwear. Gina immediately took Glenda to the emergency room at St. Dominic's Hospital in Jackson, Mississippi, fearing Glenda had been " messed with."

¶4. Dr. James Aaron examined Glenda and found her to have trichomonas, a sexually transmitted disease.[3] Dr. Aaron testified the symptoms " started one week ago" and were " in the context of the patient's older first cousin's 27-year-old boyfriend did oral sex on her and had her do oral sex on him in front of his girlfriend at the children's grandmother's house." Dr. Aaron found Glenda's history reliable. His primary diagnosis was that Glenda had been sexually assaulted.

¶5. Glenda's mother testified that while at the hospital, when she asked Glenda what happened, Glenda stated that " she was being licked by Tommie Lee while Jerica was instructing her what to do. . . . Jerica made her perform oral sex on Tommie Lee. . . ." and Jerica made threats to Glenda if she told anyone what happened. Additionally, Lisa ...


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