Assigned on Briefs February 7, 2017
from the Criminal Court for Shelby County No. 14-03603 W.
Mark Ward, Judge
Shelby County Criminal Court jury convicted the defendant,
Humphre Ford, of unlawful possession of a firearm by a
convicted felon, unlawful possession of a handgun by a
convicted felon, and two counts of simple possession of
marijuana. Due to his extensive criminal history, the trial
court imposed a within-range consecutive sentence of twelve
years, eleven months, and twenty-nine days. On appeal, the
defendant challenges the sufficiency of the evidence to
support the unlawful possession of a firearm and unlawful
possession of a handgun convictions and the imposition of
consecutive sentences. Discerning no error, we affirm the
judgments of the trial court.
R. App. P. 3 Appeal as of Right; Judgments of the Criminal
Harmon, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, Humphre Ford.
Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter;
Meredith W. Bowen, Assistant Attorney General; Amy P.
Weirich, District Attorney General; and Jose Leon, Assistant
District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of
Ross Dyer, J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which
Thomas T. Woodall, P.J., and Camille R. McMullen, J., joined.
ROSS DYER, JUDGE
and Procedural History
morning of January 3, 2014, the Memphis Police Department
("MPD") surveilled a house located at 889 Belvedere
in Memphis, Tennessee in response to two anonymous complaints
regarding the sale of drugs from the residence. The police
noted a car leaving the residence but saw no other activity.
Around 10:00 a.m., the MPD officers initiated a "knock
and talk" investigation. The defendant answered the
door, indicated he lived there with his children and their
mother, and initially identified himself as "Gino
Walker, " though he later gave the officers his real
name. The investigating officers explained why they were
present, and the defendant gave them both oral and written
permission to search the residence.
minor children were home with the defendant at the time of
the "knock and talk" - an infant and a female
child. There were no other adults present, so Detective Jewel
Yancey Claxton kept the children calm and held the infant
while other officers searched the residence and talked to the
defendant. According to Detective Claxton, at some point
during the investigation the defendant's girlfriend,
later identified as Angela Collins Gunn, entered the
residence. Ms. Gunn appeared irritated and took the infant
from Detective Claxton.
Roshundra Jackson was one of the MPD officers tasked with
searching the residence. She searched a bedroom the defendant
identified as his. This bedroom contained male clothing and
shoes, giving it the appearance a male resided there.
Detective Jackson discovered a Mason jar of marijuana and a
gun box under a queen-sized bed in the room. The gun box was
closed but not locked and contained a loaded handgun. There
were eleven rounds in the gun, including one in the chamber.
Patrick Fox, also with the MPD, searched the defendant and
recovered $1, 885.00 in cash from his front pocket and a
small amount of marijuana. The cash consisted of eighty-seven
twenty-dollar-bills, nine ten-dollar-bills, and fifty-five
one-dollar-bills. Detective Fox testified that the presence
of a large sum of cash comprised of smaller bills combined
with the discovery of the larger amount of marijuana stored
in a Mason jar were indicative of the sale of illegal drugs
by the defendant. According to Detective Fox, the marijuana
found under the bed was high-grade and packaged in a manner
to preserve the quality and aroma of the narcotic. Detective
Fox admitted baggies were not found on the premises. The
presence of baggies would also have been an indicator that
drugs were being sold in the residence.
Dewayne Smith collected and tagged the evidence at the scene
and transported it to the MPD property room. Eventually, the
narcotics were transported in sealed envelopes to the
Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) lab for testing.
Special Agent Brock Sain identified the green-leafy substance
recovered from the defendant as marijuana weighing 0.9 ...