LEON EDWARDS JR. A/K/A LEON EDWARDS, APPELLANT
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, APPELLEE
DATE OF JUDGMENT: 09/05/2013. TRIAL JUDGE: HON. ALBERT B. SMITH III. COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: COAHOMA COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT. TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: CONVICTED OF MANSLAUGHTER AND SENTENCED TO TWENTY YEARS, WITH FIFTEEN YEARS TO SERVE IN THE CUSTODY OF THE MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, FIVE YEARS SUSPENDED, AND FIVE YEARS OF PROBATION, AND TO PAY $7,256.07 TO THE CRIME VICTIMS' COMPENSATION FUND.
FOR APPELLANT: JUSTIN TAYLOR COOK, OFFICE OF STATE PUBLIC DEFENDER.
FOR APPELLEE: JEFFREY A. KLINGFUSS, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL.
BEFORE LEE, C.J., ROBERTS AND CARLTON, JJ. IRVING AND GRIFFIS, P.JJ., BARNES, ISHEE, ROBERTS, CARLTON, MAXWELL, FAIR AND JAMES, JJ., CONCUR.
NATURE OF THE CASE: CRIMINAL - FELONY
¶1. A jury in the Coahoma County Circuit Court found Leon Edwards Jr. guilty of manslaughter. The trial court sentenced Edwards to twenty years, with fifteen years to serve in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections, followed by five years of probation. Edwards filed post-trial motions, which were denied by the trial court. Edwards now appeals and asserts the following: (1) the trial court erred in not instructing the jury on the castle doctrine, and (2) the State violated his due-process rights by failing to adequately test a firearm, thereby depriving him of the opportunity to present his complete theory of defense.
¶2. Edwards's wife, Sheila Edwards, was having an affair with Darrin Dickerson. Edwards saw their cars in the parking lot of a hotel in Tunica, Mississippi. Wanting to confront them, he got their room number from the hotel clerk. Edwards knocked on the door to the hotel room adjacent to theirs and asked the occupant to have the hotel clerk call the Coahoma County Sheriff's Department. When the officer came, he identified everyone and asked Sheila to step outside. Sheila refused to talk, so Edwards left the premises.
¶3. The next day, Edwards went to Dickerson's home. Edwards knocked on Dickerson's neighbor's door, where a man Edwards worked with lived with his girlfriend, and put a gun in their closet. He went home a second time to retrieve another gun to keep inside his vehicle. When Edwards returned to Dickerson's apartment complex, he called a tow truck to remove his wife's vehicle. He was upset that Sheila had let Dickerson drive it. When Sheila heard that a tow ...