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Busby v. State

Court of Appeals of Mississippi

June 10, 2014

JAMES MARTIN BUSBY, APPELLANT
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, APPELLEE

COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: HARRISON COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT. DATE OF JUDGMENT: 03/07/2013. TRIAL JUDGE: HON. ROGER T. CLARK. TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: CONVICTED OF COUNT I, AUTO BURGLARY, AND SENTENCED TO SEVEN YEARS; AND COUNT II, AUTO THEFT, AND SENTENCED TO FIFTEEN YEARS, WITH THE SENTENCE IN COUNT II TO RUN CONCURRENTLY WITH THE SENTENCE IN COUNT I, ALL AS A HABITUAL OFFENDER IN THE CUSTODY OF THE MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, WITHOUT ELIGIBILITY FOR PAROLE OR PROBATION.

AFFIRMED.

FOR APPELLANT: OFFICE OF STATE PUBLIC DEFENDER, BY: MOLLIE MARIE MCMILLIN.

FOR APPELLANT: JAMES MARTIN BUSBY (Pro se).

FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, BY: LADONNA C. HOLLAND.

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

OPINION

Page 234

LEE, C. J.

PROCEDURAL HISTORY

¶1. James Martin Busby was convicted by a jury in the Harrison County Circuit Court of one count of auto burglary and one count of auto theft. Busby was sentenced as a habitual offender to seven years for the auto burglary and fifteen years for the auto theft. His sentences were ordered to run concurrently and be served in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections. Busby filed post-trial motions, which the trial court denied. Busby's appellate counsel filed an appeal asserting that the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction. Busby also filed a separate brief raising several additional issues, as follows: (1) ineffective assistance of counsel; (2) prosecutorial misconduct; (3) confusion regarding two jury instructions; and (4) error in the denial of his request for a continuance and substitution of counsel.

FACTS

¶2. At some time during the night of May 3 or morning of May 4, 2012, Oscar Sanzin's gold truck was stolen from his carport. Sanzin's home was located in Harrison County, Mississippi. Deputy Charles Saucier of the Harrison County Sheriff's Department responded to the scene. Sanzin's neighbor, Sandra Pittman, approached Deputy Saucier and told him that her husband's car had been broken into and his wallet stolen. Von Pittman testified he had left his wallet in the console of his car the night before and often left his car doors unlocked.

¶3. Officer Martin Wagner of the Biloxi Police Department heard the BOLO, or " be on the lookout," for Sanzin's gold truck and spotted a truck matching the description. Officer Wagner, along with ...


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