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Powell v. State

Supreme Court of Mississippi

July 26, 2018

DEXTER POWELL
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI

          DATE OF JUDGMENT: 02/22/2017

          WASHINGTON COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT TRIAL JUDGE: HON. MARGARET CAREY-McCRAY

          ATTORNEYS: TAKIYAH HERMIONE PERKINS KAYLON ALEXANDER McCOU MICHAEL ANTHONY WILLIAMS

          ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLANT: OFFICE OF THE STATE PUBLIC DEFENDER BY: HUNTER NOLAN AIKENS GEORGE T. HOLMES

          ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY: JOSEPH SCOTT HEMLEBEN

          DISTRICT ATTORNEY: WILLIE DEWAYNE RICHARDSON

          BEFORE KITCHENS, P.J., KING AND BEAM, JJ.

          BEAM, JUSTICE,

         ¶1. Dexter Powell was convicted of aggravated assault and felon in possession of a firearm following a jury trial in the Washington County Circuit Court. He appeals from those convictions, claiming: (1) ineffective assistance of counsel, and (2) insufficient evidence in support of the verdicts, both of which also were against the overwhelming weight of the evidence. Finding no reversible error, we affirm the trial court's judgment of convictions.

         FACTS

         ¶2. On May 3, 2015, Jamarcus Barton, Darry Buck, Marcus Jones, Larry Ross, Adrian Pam, and Eddie Brisco went to Club Fountain after a day of drinking and playing dominos at Barton's house. Buck drove the group to the club in a Chevrolet Tahoe.

         ¶3. At the club, the group encountered Powell. At some point, a dispute broke out between Barton and Powell about an incident that had happened in the past. The two went outside the club, where the argument turned physical after Powell poked Barton in the eye. At that point, Barton struck Powell and Powell fell to the ground and urinated on himself. According to Barton, he then helped Powell up because "[w]e're homeboys. I mean, homeboys fight. It was over with."

         ¶4. Afterward, others from the group came outside to see what was happening. When Pam saw Powell, he said, "Man, you peed on yourself." Pam, Buck, and Barton then walked to the corner of the street.

         ¶5. According to Pam, he was unaware that a physical altercation had occurred. Pam said that while he was standing with Powell, he heard Powell on his cellular telephone asking someone named "D" to bring Powell a "strap."

         ¶6. According to Buck, Powell's childhood friend, when he saw that Powell had urinated on himself, he insisted that he take Powell home. Buck pulled the Tahoe around and the group got into the truck. Buck was driving; Jones sat in the in the front passenger seat; Barton sat behind Buck; Powell sat behind Jones, and Pam sat in the middle seat between Barton and Powell. Brisco sat in the third row behind Barton, Pam, and Powell. Ross was left behind at the club.

         ¶7. Buck drove to Powell's house. According to Pam, when Powell opened the door to get out, the vehicle's interior light came on, revealing that Powell was holding a gun. Pam grabbed the barrel of the gun and the two men struggled over the gun, then Powell fell out of the vehicle with the gun.

         ¶8. When Powell stood up, he pointed the gun and fired, striking Barton in the upper-right side of his back. Barton got out of the vehicle on the other side and ran to the front of vehicle, where he collapsed. Pam got out of the vehicle and helped Barton to his feet.

         ¶9. According to Barton, Powell came around the back of the vehicle still holding the gun, and "another shot went off." Barton then took off running. ...


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