Court of Criminal Appeals of Tennessee, Nashville
Assigned on Briefs April 19, 2017
from the Criminal Court for Davidson County No. 2015-B-1337
J. Randall Wyatt, Jr., Judge
Davidson County jury convicted the Defendant, Reginold C.
Steed, of attempted voluntary manslaughter, especially
aggravated robbery, and aggravated assault. The trial court
merged the aggravated assault conviction into the especially
aggravated robbery conviction and imposed an effective
sentence of twenty-seven years. On appeal, the Defendant
contends that (1) the jury returned inconsistent verdicts;
(2) the trial court erred in declining to merge the attempted
voluntary manslaughter conviction into the especially
aggravated robbery conviction; and (3) his sentences are
excessive. Upon reviewing the record and the applicable law,
we affirm the judgments of the trial court.
R. App. P. 3 Appeal as of Right; Judgments of the Criminal
Davidson, Nashville, Tennessee (on appeal and at sentencing
hearing); Dawn Deaner, District Public Defender; and Martesha
Johnson and Kevin Griffith, Assistant District Public
Defenders (at trial), for the appellant, Reginold C. Steed.
Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; Sophia
S. Lee, Senior Counsel; Glenn Funk, District Attorney
General; and Jude Santana, Assistant District Attorney
General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.
Everett Williams, J., delivered the opinion of the court, in
which James Curwood Witt, Jr., and Camille R. McMullen, JJ.,
EVERETT WILLIAMS, JUDGE
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
evidence presented at trial established that on February 18,
2015, the Defendant shot the victim, Labrian Lyons, multiple
times while the victim was inside his car parked outside of
Firehouse Subs located near Charlotte Avenue in Nashville,
Tennessee. The victim ran out of the car and to a nearby
Publix grocery store where someone called the police. The
Defendant fled in the victim's car, which was later
recovered in Jackson, Tennessee. The victim sustained a
gunshot wound to his right wrist and two gunshot wounds to
his right leg. The Defendant was arrested and charged with
attempted first degree murder, especially aggravated robbery,
carjacking, aggravated assault, and employing a firearm
during the commission of a dangerous felony.
victim testified that he met the Defendant through Mr. Joshua
Sain, with whom the victim played basketball. On five of six
occasions prior to the shooting, the victim and the Defendant
"hung out" and smoked marijuana at an apartment
complex or other areas near Tennessee State University where
the Defendant was a student. Upon learning that the Defendant
was experiencing financial difficulties, the victim loaned
money to the Defendant on two different occasions for a total
February 18, 2015, the Defendant called the victim and stated
that he had received a refund check from school and could
repay the loan. They agreed to meet at a Firehouse Subs
located near Charlotte Avenue. The victim arrived at the
restaurant in his 2014 Acura TL at approximately noon or 1:00
p.m. and parked in front of the restaurant. Although it was
cold and had snowed, the Defendant was sitting on the patio
outside. As the victim approached the restaurant, he asked
the Defendant, "What's up Reggie?" The
Defendant replied that he was waiting on someone. The victim
entered the restaurant where he purchased sweet tea and a
cookie and returned outside. The Defendant said, "Man, I
ain't waiting on them, let's just go to the
victim and the Defendant went to the victim's car, where
the victim sat in the driver's seat and the Defendant sat
in the front passenger's seat. As the victim was setting
down his drink and his cookie, he turned to see the Defendant
pointing a gun at him. The Defendant said, "Man, you
know what time it is. This [is] how this [is] going to
go…. Take your pants off." The victim offered the
Defendant money, his shoes, and his car, but the Defendant
took no action to retrieve the items.
victim testified that he did not know what the Defendant
wanted and that he feared for his life. As a result, the
victim attempted to take the gun away from the Defendant.
During the struggle, the victim opened the passenger side
door, pushed the Defendant outside of the car and onto the
concrete, and got on top of the Defendant to prevent the
Defendant from shooting him. At one point, two men attempted
to help the victim but fled upon seeing the gun. The victim
was unable to take the gun away from the Defendant. The
victim denied possessing a weapon or threatening the
victim was able to get up off the ground and retreat to his
car. As he attempted to start the car, the Defendant got off
the ground and shot into the car three or four times. The
victim got out of the car and ran to Publix located behind
Firehouse Subs. The victim heard four additional gunshots
behind him as he was running. As he approached Publix, a
woman saw him bleeding and called the police.
victim sustained a gunshot wound to his right wrist and two
gunshot wounds to his right leg. He was transported by
ambulance to a hospital where he was treated for a shattered
wrist and two gunshot wounds to his leg. The victim underwent
three surgeries to repair his wrist and remained in the
hospital for two weeks. The victim underwent physical therapy
for his wrist injury for three or four months. As a result of
the injury, he could not move his wrist or pick up any items
for a time period. The victim stated that his wrist, fingers,
and hand were not as strong as they were prior to the injury.
He also had scars on his wrist and leg and showed the scars
to the jury.
victim testified that he left his cellular phone in his car
while fleeing to Publix. He later learned that his car was no
longer where he had parked it. The victim subsequently
recovered the car at a police impound in Jackson, Tennessee.
He stated that the Defendant was from Jackson. When the
victim retrieved the car, he noted that the windshield had
been shot and that there were bullet holes in the middle
console. All of the valuable items in the car, including the
victim's cellular phone, were missing.
victim testified that when he initially spoke to officers, he
identified the shooter as "Reg" but stated that he
did not know "Reg's" full name. The victim did
not know the Defendant's telephone number but had it
stored in his cellular phone. As a result, he was not able to
provide the officers with the Defendant's telephone
number. The victim called Mr. Sain to obtain the
Defendant's full name and later provided officers with
the Defendant's full name.
victim acknowledged that he had a prior conviction for simple
possession of marijuana and was on probation for the offense
at the time of the shooting. During that time period, he was
required to report to his probation officer as a condition of
his probation and was not doing so. The victim also had been
arrested for another charge that was still pending at the
time of the trial.
cross-examination, the victim testified that he first met the
Defendant in August 2014 and that by November 2014, he felt
comfortable enough with the Defendant to loan him money. The
victim said that while they did not discuss a date for
repayment, the Defendant was supposed to repay him once the
Defendant received his refund check from school. The victim
denied that his relationship with the Defendant or their
meeting prior to the shooting revolved around drugs.
victim acknowledged on cross-examination that contrary to his
testimony on direct examination, he did not tell any of the
officers that he knew the shooter as "Reg" or
"Reginald." The victim explained that he wanted to
obtain the Defendant's full name before providing the
information to the officers. He did not tell the officers
that he had "hung out" with the Defendant on four
or five occasions and did not provide the officers with the
name of the apartment complex where he and the Defendant
"hung out." The victim provided officers with the
Defendant's full name the day after the shooting.
victim acknowledged that in March 2011, he was arrested for
possession with intent to sell, manufacture, or deliver over
one-half ounce of marijuana. He posted bond following his
arrest but never returned to court to face the charge. In
2012, a warrant was issued for violation of his probation for
a prior conviction for simple possession of marijuana. He
also was charged with a felony due to his failure to appear
in court. The warrants were outstanding at the time of the
shooting and were still pending at the time of trial.
Alfred Attaway, Jr., Ms. Alexis Fleming, and Mr. Richard
Buchanan were inside Firehouse Subs when the shooting
occurred. While entering the restaurant, Ms. Fleming and Mr.
Buchanan saw a man sitting alone outside on ...