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Taylor v. State

Court of Appeals of Mississippi

November 27, 2018

RAQUEL SHADAWN TAYLOR A/K/A RAQUEL TAYLOR APPELLANT
v.
STATE OF MISSISSIPPI APPELLEE

          DATE OF JUDGMENT: 09/19/2017

          COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED HON. STEVE S. RATCLIFF III MADISON COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT TRIAL JUDGE

          ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: OFFICE OF STATE PUBLIC DEFENDER BY: W. DANIEL HINCHCLIFF.

          ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL BY: BILLY L. GORE.

          BEFORE IRVING, P.J., CARLTON AND FAIR, JJ.

          FAIR, J.

         ¶1. On September 12, 2017, a jury convicted Raquel Taylor of aggravated assault. Taylor was sentenced as a non-violent habitual offender to serve twenty years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC) with sixteen years suspended after serving four years, followed by five years of supervised probation. Taylor now appeals.

         FACTS

         ¶2. On December 26, 2015, while shopping at Northpark Mall in Ridgeland, Mississippi, Tiphaney Willis and Taylor had a verbal exchange about a mutual male interest. Willis made a purchase at the store where the confrontation occurred and proceeded to leave the mall. In the parking lot, as Willis was approaching her car, Taylor came from behind and struck Willis several times with a tire-iron. A bystander intervened and called 911. Taylor drove away from the scene.

         ¶3. Willis was taken to the hospital. Ridgeland police officer Barry Hollingsworth responded to the scene and found Willis with two contusions on her head and blood on her face. Jason Rudd, a Ridgeland police officer, also responded to the scene and witnessed Willis, on a stretcher, being put into the ambulance. A suspect was developed based on the eyewitnesses' accounts. The next day, Willis identified a picture of Taylor and the tire-iron. Taylor was arrested.

         ¶4. After waiving her Miranda[1] rights, Taylor made a statement. At trial, Taylor conceded that she hit Willis with a tire-iron. Among those who testified were two shoppers that witnessed the exchange of words inside the mall and the assault in the parking lot. A unanimous jury found Taylor guilty of aggravated assault.

         DISCUSSION

         ¶5. Pursuant to Lindsey v. State, 939 So.2d 743 (Miss. 2005), appellate counsel filed a brief stating that he:

diligently searched the procedural and factual history of this criminal action and scoured the record searching for any arguable issues which could be presented to the Court on Raquel Shadawn Taylor's behalf in good faith for ...

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