DAYLON WALDROP A/K/A DAYLON CARL WALDROP A/K/A DAYLON C. WALDROP APPELLANT
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI APPELLEE
OF JUDGMENT: 10/19/2016
FORREST COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, HON. ROBERT B. HELFRICH JUDGE:
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: OFFICE OF STATE PUBLIC DEFENDER BY:
MOLLIE MARIE MCMILLIN
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY:
JOSEPH SCOTT HEMLEBEN
DISTRICT ATTORNEY: PATRICIA A. THOMAS BURCHELL
IRVING, P.J., WILSON AND TINDELL, JJ.
A Forrest County jury convicted Daylon Waldrop of capital
murder with the underlying felony of armed robbery.
See Miss. Code Ann. § 97-3-19(2)(e) (Rev.
2014). The Forrest County Circuit Court then sentenced
Waldrop to life imprisonment without eligibility for parole.
On appeal, Waldrop challenges (1) the circuit court's
failure to instruct the jury on the elements of the
underlying felony of armed robbery and (2) the admission of a
recorded 911 call made after the crime.
Upon review, we find Waldrop's first assignment of error
dispositive. Neither party disputes that the circuit court
failed to instruct the jury on the elements of the underlying
felony of armed robbery. Both parties further acknowledge
that, in Harrell v. State, 134 So.3d 266, 275
(¶30) (Miss. 2014), the Mississippi Supreme Court
overruled its prior precedent and held that "it is
always and in every case reversible error for the courts of
Mississippi to deny an accused the right to have a jury
decide guilt as to each and every
element." In light of Harrell, the circuit
court's failure here to instruct the jury on the elements
of the underlying felony of armed robbery warrants the
reversal of Waldrop's capital-murder conviction. We
therefore reverse his conviction and remand this case for a
On August 20, 2014, a Forrest County grand jury indicted
Waldrop for capital murder during the commission of an armed
robbery. The indictment charged the following:
[Waldrop, ] in Forrest County, Mississippi, on or about
August 1, 2013, did then and there willfully, unlawfully[,
] and feloniously, and with or without any design to effect
. . . death, kill and murder Robert Williams, a human
being, while in the commission of the crime and felony of
[r]obbery with a deadly weapon . . . .
At Waldrop's trial, prior to submitting the case to the
jury, the circuit court instructed the jury as follows on the
elements of capital murder:
Waldrop has been charged with the offense of capital murder.
If you find from the evidence in this ...