OF JUDGMENT: 09/19/2017
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.
IRVING, P.J., CARLTON AND FAIR, JJ.
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.
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.
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.
After waiving her Miranda 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.
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