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State v. Richardson

Court of Criminal Appeals of Tennessee, Jackson

January 27, 2017

STATE OF TENNESSEE
v.
DAVID RICHARDSON

          Session Date: October 4, 2016

          Appeal from the Criminal Court for Shelby County Nos. 11-02623, 11-07432 Lee V. Coffee, Judge

          The defendant, David Richardson, appeals the trial court's imposition of consecutive sentences upon remand for a new sentencing hearing. After review, we affirm the sentencing decision of the trial court.

         Tenn. R. App. P. 3 Appeal as of Right; Judgment of the Criminal Court Affirmed

          Joseph S. Ozment, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, David Richardson.

          Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley, Senior Counsel; Amy P. Weirich, District Attorney General; and Theresa McCusker, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

          Alan E. Glenn, J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which Camille R. McMullen and Timothy L. Easter, JJ., joined.

          OPINION

          ALAN E. GLENN, JUDGE

         FACTS

         As the result of the defendant's and two co-defendants' engaging in a prolonged assault of gunfire on a crowd of people outside a Memphis home, the defendant was convicted by a Shelby County Criminal Court jury of first degree premeditated murder; twelve counts of attempted first degree murder, Class A felonies; twelve counts of aggravated assault, Class C felonies; one count of employment of a firearm during the attempt to commit a dangerous felony, a Class C felony; and one count of reckless endangerment committed with a deadly weapon, a Class E felony. State v. David Richardson, No. W2013-01763-CCA-R3-CD, 2014 WL 6491066, at *1 (Tenn. Crim. App. Nov. 20, 2014). The trial court sentenced the defendant to life imprisonment for the first degree murder conviction, eighteen years at thirty percent release eligibility for each of the attempted first degree murder convictions, five years at thirty percent release eligibility for each of the aggravated assault convictions, six years at one hundred percent release eligibility for the employment of a firearm during the attempt to commit a dangerous felony conviction, and two years at thirty percent release eligibility for the felony reckless endangerment conviction. Id. The court ordered the sentences for the attempted first degree murder convictions be served consecutively to one another, consecutively to the sentence of life imprisonment, and consecutively to the sentences for employment of a firearm and felony reckless endangerment but concurrently with the sentences for the aggravated assault convictions, for an effective sentence of life imprisonment plus 224 years. Id.

         On direct appeal, this court affirmed the defendant's twenty-seven convictions. Id. However, this court remanded the case to the trial court for a new sentencing hearing, limited to consideration of the factors outlined in State v. Wilkerson, 905 S.W.2d 933 (Tenn. 1995), to determine the propriety of consecutive sentencing. Id.

         Because the facts of the case are important for us to conduct a thorough review of the trial court's decision on resentencing, we recite a summary of the facts from this court's opinion in the original direct appeal:

Willie Brooks-Howze testified that at 10:30 or 10:45 p.m. on July 3, 2010, she dropped off her twenty-four-year-old daughter, Kimberly Jamerson, at the home of her sister, Sonja Watkins, which was located at 2706 Northmeade Avenue in Memphis. She said this was the last time she saw her daughter alive because her daughter was shot and killed later that night.
Robrecus Braxton testified that he lived at 2706 Northmeade Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee, in Shelby County, with his mother, Sonja Watkins; his step-father, Felix Williams; his brother, Christopher Braxton; and his two sisters, Amber and Dakarrionah Laury. Robrecus said that on July 3, 2010, his family was preparing for a Fourth of July party at their house the next day. His cousins, Chymia Baker, Jalon Baker, Bianca Nevels, Travis Britton, Rodney Davenport, Terriance Webb; and his uncle, Nakia Greer, were also present during the party preparations on July 3, 2010.
In the afternoon of July 3, 2010, Robrecus observed a green Chevrolet Lumina park in front of his home and saw [the defendant] and a man later identified as Kenneth Brown, get out of the car. He knew [the defendant] and Kenneth because they lived nearby and because he had gone to high school with them. Robrecus overheard an argument between Kenneth and his uncle, Nakia Greer, wherein Kenneth claimed that Robrecus's aunt, Dena Watkins, had taken some of his marijuana. During the argument, Felix Williams, told Kenneth and [the defendant] that Dena Watkins was no longer present at the party. Williams told them to return later, and he would "get the situation handled." Kenneth and [the defendant] left but drove back to the area a few minutes later with a third man, later identified as Devon Brown. All three men exited the car, and Williams gave them $5.00 to settle Watkins's debt. The three men got back in the Chevrolet Lumina, and as they were leaving the area, their car nearly hit Robrecus, who reacted by throwing a beer can he had been holding into the open window of the car. The Lumina quickly stopped on Ladue Street, and the three men jumped out of the vehicle and began exchanging words with Robrecus. A fistfight eventually broke out with Kenneth Brown, Devon Brown, and [the defendant] fighting with Robrecus Braxton, Christopher Braxton, and Kenneth Baker. Robrecus stated that neither side had any weapons during the fight and that Williams broke up the fight. As [the defendant], Kenneth, and Devon were leaving, one of them said, "All right. That's what's up."
Approximately two hours later, Robrecus heard what he thought were fireworks and saw green and red lights before realizing that the sounds he was hearing were gunshots. He and his friend Lamarcus Moore ran under the carport toward the backyard. When he got to the backyard, Robrecus stood by a wall trying to take cover as the gunshots continued. He could see down the pathway and observed Mark and Steve Chambers standing on Northmeade Avenue returning fire with their own guns. He said Mark and Steve Chambers were the only two people at the party returning fire. Then Robrecus heard Moore say, "I'm hit, I'm hit hard." When the gunshots stopped, he heard Rodney Davenport yell, "Kim['s] been hit." Robrecus ran to the front yard and saw his cousin, Kimberly Jamerson, lying on the sidewalk in front of his house. His friends, Antoine Moore and Rico Chandler, put Robrecus in a car to get help. They found an unmarked police car a short time later and alerted the officer that Kimberly Jamerson had been shot and killed. Robrecus said that at the time the shooting occurred, the following people were in attendance at the party: Antoine Moore; Rico Chandler; Steve Chambers; Mark Chambers; Travis Britton; Kenneth Baker; Jalon Baker; Terriance Webb; Nakia Greer; his mother, Sonja Watkins; his two sisters; his cousin Whitney Henderson; and Lashanna Jones; as well as Jones's children, Shakarla King, Danaria Love, and Danara Love. He said that when he first heard the gunshots, some of the people at the party were inside the house and some were outside under the carport.
Robrecus stated that the gunfire went on for "about ten minutes . . . like it wasn't going to stop." He could tell that the shooters were up the street because of the way the bullets were hitting the cars parked around the Northmeade house. However, he could not see the shooters because it was dark outside. Robrecus said that he was "terrified" and "felt like [his] life was in danger" because the "bullets could have hit anybody." The day after the shooting, Robrecus talked to police about what had happened and identified [the ...

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