MARTIN BLAKE PUGH A/K/A MARTIN B. PUGH A/K/A BLAKE PUGH A/K/A MARTIN APPELLANT
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI APPELLEE
OF JUDGMENT: 03/31/2017
COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, HON. GERALD W. CHATHAM SR. JUDGE.
ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLANT: JOHN T. LAMAR JR. TAYLOR A. HECK.
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY:
KAYLYN HAVRILLA MCCLINTON.
DISTRICT ATTORNEY: JOHN W. CHAMPION.
GRIFFIS, P.J., FAIR AND TINDELL, JJ.
This case involves the alleged sexual battery of an
unconscious seventeen-year-old girl by three young men, one
of whom recorded a portion of the sexual conduct on Snapchat.
Martin Blake Pugh, Jayland Christipher Brittmon, and Matthew
Anderson Craddock were indicted on the charges of conspiracy
to commit sexual battery and sexual battery of an
incapacitated person. Craddock was further indicted on the
charge of depicting a child under the age of eighteen years
engaging in sexual conduct.
Brittmon subsequently pleaded guilty to the conspiracy charge
and to the reduced charge of simple assault. Craddock pleaded
guilty to aggravated assault. Pugh proceeded to trial and was
found guilty of both conspiracy to commit sexual battery and
sexual battery of an incapacitated person.
Pugh was sentenced to serve one year in the custody of the
Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC), with six months
suspended, followed by four years and six months of
post-release supervision on the conspiracy charge, and one
year in the custody of the MDOC, with one year suspended, on
the sexual battery charge, to run concurrently with the
sentence for conspiracy. He was ordered to pay $200
restitution to the District Attorney; $1, 763 restitution to
the DeSoto County Circuit Court Clerk; a $500 fine; $100 to
the Crime Victim Compensation Fund; and all court costs. Pugh
was further ordered to register as a sex offender upon his
release from incarceration.
Pugh now appeals and argues: (1) the circuit court
erroneously admitted into evidence the Snapchat video as well
as various text-message conversations among the parties, (2)
there is insufficient evidence to support his conviction of
conspiracy to commit sexual battery, and (3) the numerous
evidentiary errors amount to cumulative error and mandate
reversal. We find no error and affirm.
On April 5, 2015, at approximately 3:00 a.m., Drew Kazemba
received a Snapchat video from Craddock that showed "two
guys having sex with a girl [who] looked unconscious, and it
was a black guy and then there was a white guy on the other
end having oral sex with her." Kazemba saved the video
because the girl looked unconscious. He showed the video to
his mother and ultimately turned the video in to Marshall
County law enforcement.
At trial, Kazemba testified that Craddock admitted to being
one of the guys in the video and identified the
unconscious-looking girl as Gina Warren. The Snapchat
video was offered and admitted into evidence as Exhibit 1,
with no objection by Pugh.
Following Kazemba's testimony, Brittmon testified
regarding the events of the night. Brittmon explained that on
the night of Saturday, April 4, 2015, he, along with Pugh,
Craddock, Kate Hill, and Blake Conner, went to a party in
Byhalia. Gina, Brittmon's close friend, was also at the
party and, according to Brittmon, spent most of the time
flirting with Conner. Brittmon stated he did not see Gina
flirt with Pugh or Craddock.
Later that night, Gina asked Brittmon for a ride to Hannah
Ferguson's house. Brittmon, Pugh, Craddock, Hill, Conner,
and Gina subsequently left the party around midnight.
Brittmon testified that at the time they left the party, Gina
was "pretty drunk." They dropped Hill off at her
house and decided to go to Waffle House to eat. However,
Brittmon explained that once they arrived at Waffle House,
they "decided not [to eat] after [they] had to help
[Gina] inside - [s]he couldn't make it alone to the
restroom, so [they] decided just to leave." However,
they did not take Gina to Hannah Ferguson's house
"[b]ecause at one point [Gina] stated she didn't
want to go, and then [they] figured it would be easier for
[them] to just go to [Brittmon's] house and not to worry
When they got to Brittmon's house, Conner got in his car
and left. Brittmon stated that they "[had] to pretty
much help [Gina] inside" as she was "still in the
same condition." Once inside Brittmon's house,
Brittmon, Pugh, Craddock, and Gina went to Brittmon's
bedroom. Although they were going to send Gina upstairs, Gina
"jumped in bed and got undressed." Brittmon and
Pugh then got in the bed with Gina. Craddock was on the floor
or in an adjoining bathroom.
According to Brittmon, Gina unbuckled Pugh's pants and
began performing oral sex on him. Brittmon was about to tell
them to get out when Gina grabbed his hand and stuck it in
her pants. Brittmon stated they all "start[ed] messing
around" and "pretty much all three had sex with
[Gina] at some point throughout the night." Brittmon
explained that Craddock got involved "randomly
throughout the escapade." Brittmon had sex with Gina
first, then Pugh, then Craddock, and then Brittmon had sex
with Gina again for a second time. The Snapchat video,
previously admitted into evidence, was then published to the
Following publication of the video, Brittmon testified that
there was no break in the time period while the three men
were having sex with Gina. Instead, "[i]t happen[ed] all
at the same time."
Brittmon further testified that he recalled seeing a
flashlight but did not realize that it was a Snapchat video.
Brittmon learned of the Snapchat video "[o]nce
everything [w]as finished" and he checked his phone.
Brittmon agreed that the video was received shortly after the
Following the incident, Brittmon and Pugh took Craddock home.
Brittmon testified that they discussed the video at one point
but did not talk about it a lot. However, Brittmon stated
that Pugh was aware of the video at that time. After Brittmon
and Pugh dropped off Craddock, they returned to
Brittmon's house and went to sleep.
The next morning, Gina woke up and asked why her clothes were
off. Brittmon told her that she had gotten hot. Neither
Brittmon nor Pugh advised Gina that they had had sex.
Several hours later, Gina texted Brittmon and the following
Gina: Hey! Thanks [f]or letting me crash at your house.
Brittmon: [H]aha no problem. [B]ut I gotta tell you
somethin[g].. we kinda had sex last night and I feel so bad
about it. I wouldn't have done it but you kept grabbin at
my wang lol[.] I wanted to tell you this morning but you
didn't remember and that made me feel even worse. [B]ut
you deserve to know the truth.
Gina: You're not joking are you?
Brittmon: [U]nfortunately I'm not[.]
Gina: Shit happens don't worry about it[.]
Brittmon: [C]ool beans[.]
Gina: [Brittmon, ] are you sure you aren't just making
this up because I swear to God I got there[, ] threw up[, ]
and went to bed[?]
Brittmon: Why would I make this up haha[?]
Gina: Idk a joke[.]
Brittmon: [L]ol[, ] no as much as I wish it was[.]
Gina again texted Brittmon on Monday, April 6, 2015, and
asked about the Snapchat video. Their conversation was as
Gina: [Brittmon, ] wtf is this[?]
Brittmon: [Craddock] probably made up a story cus that did
Gina: Was he even at your house?? Hannah [F]erguson
apparently said there is a video of me or something but I
don't believe it[.] I know you wouldn't let something
like this happen to me [Brittmon]. I'm already
disappointed with me and you because obviously I was
plastered[, ] but if this shit is true I'm probably going
to be pissed[.]
Brittmon: [Y]eah that dickhead walked in with his [message
explained that he told Gina that Craddock walked in on them
while they were having sex and took a video on his phone.
Following his text-message conversation with Gina, Brittmon
texted Craddock and Pugh and advised that people were aware
of the Snapchat video. The following group discussion
Brittmon: CRADDOCK[, ] WHY DOES [GINA] KNOW ABOUT THE
SNAPCHAT YOU FUCKIN IDIOT[?] YOU ARE GETTING YOUR ASS BEAT[.]
Craddock: How does she know?? I didn't tell anyone[.]
Brittmon: [Y]our stupid sent it to people and they fuckin
talk you dumb piece of shit[.] [S]omeone mentioned the
snap[.] [F]uck you [Craddock;] we ain't even cool[.] I
told her u walked in while me and her were fuckin just [to]
fuck with me and got it on snap[;] that's it[.]
Craddock: [redacted for the jury]
Brittmon: [A]lready did ya fuck[.] [W]ho the fuck did you