SHAMOR BILLUPS A/K/A SHAMOR L. BILLUPS A/K/A SHAMAR BILLUPS APPELLANT
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI APPELLEE
OF JUDGMENT: 08/22/2016
LOWNDES COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT HON. JAMES T. KITCHENS JR. TRIAL
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: OFFICE OF STATE PUBLIC DEFENDER BY:
GEORGE T. HOLMES
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY:
LAURA HOGAN TEDDER
DISTRICT ATTORNEY: SCOTT WINSTON COLOM
IRVING, P.J., WILSON AND TINDELL, JJ.
A Lowndes County grand jury indicted Shamor Billups for Count
I, felony shoplifting, and Count II, unlawful possession of a
firearm by a convicted felon. See Miss. Code Ann.
§ 97-23-93 (Rev. 2014); Miss. Code Ann. § 97-37-5
(Rev. 2014). A jury acquitted Billups of Count I but
convicted him of Count II. On August 22, 2016, the Lowndes
County Circuit Court sentenced Billups as a habitual offender
under Mississippi Code Annotated section 99-19-81 (Rev. 2014)
to ten years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of
Corrections (MDOC). On August 29, 2016, Billups's
attorney filed an unsuccessful motion for a new trial or, in
the alternative, a judgment notwithstanding the verdict. On
appeal, Billups's initial brief focused on the
sufficiency and weight of the evidence, and the actual or
constructive element of his crime-possession of a firearm by
a felon. A supplemental pro se brief includes a list of other
unsupported claims or procedurally barred claims. Finding no
error, we affirm Billups's conviction and sentence.
On March 13, 2015, two men approached the gun counter of K
and S Outdoors (K&S) in Columbus, Mississippi. One asked
to look at a pistol, and the other asked to look at a long
gun. The K&S clerk, Chad Fortner, handed one of the men a
pistol and the other a Ruger-SR-762 rifle. Both men then
attempted to run from the store with the firearms. The man
with the rifle successfully fled. Fortner tackled and secured
the other man before the man could exit K&S. The stolen
rifle was a .308 caliber Ruger-SR-762 rifle with a
collapsible stock and a twenty-round magazine that retailed
for $1, 699. K&S identified the gun by its serial number.
A video of the March 13, 2015 incident at K&S shows a man
wearing a maroon Mississippi State hoodie, camouflage pants,
and a toboggan at the K&S gun counter holding a rifle.
The video shows that same man, in the same clothes, running
out of K&S with a rifle. Chris Berry, a K&S customer,
and its manager, Carey Chaffin, also witnessed the man run
out the door of K&S carrying a rifle.
Shortly after the events at K&S, Investigator Timothy
Jenkins with the Columbus Police Department recovered a
maroon Mississippi State hoodie, camouflage pants, and a blue
toboggan about a block and a half east of K&S.
Investigator Jenkins also interviewed the man who was earlier
restrained while attempting to flee K&S.
The investigation led the Columbus police to 20th Street
North. Approximately an hour and a half to two hours after
the shoplifting incident at K&S, as Columbus police
approached 1215 20th Street North, Billups came out of a shed
at that address. Columbus police ordered Billups to the
ground, and he complied. Investigator Jenkins learned the
1215 20th Street North property was owned by Billups's
aunt, Connie Billups. Connie gave Jenkins consent to search
her outbuildings. Officer Christopher Benton wore a body
camera and participated in Investigator Jenkins's search
of the shed Billups was seen leaving. A rifle was found
upright in the front corner of the shed covered in a shirt.
The shed was otherwise empty except for a bicycle and the
stolen rifle. Police later identified the rifle by its serial
number as the Ruger-SR-762 rifle taken earlier from K&S.