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State v. Bose-Maben

Court of Criminal Appeals of Tennessee, Jackson

April 17, 2018

STATE OF TENNESSEE
v.
ANDREW DE BOSE-MABEN

          Assigned on Briefs April 3, 2018

          Appeal from the Criminal Court for Shelby County No. 15-04100 Chris Craft, Judge

         Andrew De Bose-Maben ("the Defendant") was convicted by a Shelby County jury of aggravated robbery, for which the trial court imposed a sentence of nine years to serve in the Department of Correction.[1] On appeal, the Defendant contends that the trial court abused its discretion by allowing the State to question the victim about his interaction with the Defendant during a recess at trial. Upon review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

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

          Claiborne H. Ferguson, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, Andrew De Bose-Maben.

          Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; Jonathan H. Wardle, Assistant Attorney General; Amy P. Weirich, District Attorney General; and Jose Leon, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

          Robert L. Holloway, Jr., J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which D. Kelly Thomas, Jr., and J. Ross Dyer, JJ., joined.

          OPINION

          ROBERT L. HOLLOWAY, JR., JUDGE.

         On May 2, 2015, Howard Boxley ("the victim") was walking home when two young men in a gold Malibu approached him. The man in the passenger seat of the vehicle pointed a shotgun at the victim and demanded that the victim give him everything in his pockets. When the victim responded that he did not have anything in his pockets, the man demanded his Dallas Cowboy's watch. The victim complied and gave the man his watch, and the two men drove away. The victim chased after the car in order to see the tag number, and then he called 911 and provided the dispatcher the tag number, the make and model of the car, and a general description of the assailants and the shotgun. The victim said that the driver of the car was "dark-skinned" and that the passenger was "light-skinned, " but he was unable to provide further details because he had been focused on the shotgun.

         Minutes after the robbery, officers with the Memphis Police Department located the Defendant and co-defendant Kerr driving the gold Malibu suspected in connection with the robbery. Officers also found the victim's stolen watch inside the pocket of the front passenger door and a sawed-off shotgun similar to that described by the victim as being used in the crime. Additionally, they found an envelope addressed to the Defendant inside the vehicle. The officers arrested both the Defendant and co-defendant Kerr. Upon questioning, both defendants gave statements admitting to their participation in the robbery. The Defendant admitted that he pointed the unloaded shotgun at the victim, and co-defendant Kerr admitted that he was driving the gold Malibu during the robbery.

         In August 2015, the Shelby County Grand Jury indicted the Defendant and co-defendant Kerr with two counts of aggravated robbery based on this offense. Following a trial, the jury found the Defendant guilty as charged.[2] Following a sentencing hearing, the trial court sentenced the Defendant, as a Range I standard offender, to nine years' incarceration. The Defendant then filed a timely motion for new trial, which was denied following a hearing. This timely appeal follows.

         Analysis

         On appeal, the Defendant contends that the trial court abused its discretion by allowing the State to question the victim regarding his interaction with the Defendant during a lunch recess at trial. The State responds that the trial court did not abuse its discretion. We agree with the State.

         Generally, "questions concerning the admissibility of evidence rest within the sound discretion of the trial court, and this [c]ourt will not interfere in the absence of abuse appearing on the face of the record." State v. Plyant, 263 S.W.3d 854, 870 (Tenn. 2008). A trial court abuses its discretion when it "applies an incorrect legal standard or reaches a conclusion that is 'illogical or unreasonable and causes an ...


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