Posts tagged "1000215"

Commonwealth v. Gomes (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-002-15)

NOTICE: All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports. If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA, 02108-1750; (617) 557- 1030; SJC-11537 COMMONWEALTH vs. JEREMY D. GOMES. Berkshire. September 2, 2014. – January 12, 2015. Present: Gants, C.J., Spina, Cordy, Botsford, Duffly, Lenk, & Hines, JJ. Identification. Evidence, Identification. Practice, Criminal, Request for jury instructions, Instructions to jury. Indictments found and returned in the Superior Court Department on October 24, 2011. The cases were tried before by John A. Agostini, J. The Supreme Judicial Court granted an application for direct appellate review. John Fennel, Committee for Public Counsel Services, for the defendant. John Bossé, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth. The following submitted briefs for amici curiae: Daniel F. Conley, District Attorney, & Cailin M. Campbell, Assistant District Attorney, for District Attorney for the Suffolk District. Lisa J. Steele for Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. David W. Ogden, Daniel S. Volchok, Francesco Valentini, & Nathalie F.P. Gilfoyle, of the District of Columbia, & John C. Polley for American Psychological Association & another.2 M. Chris Fabricant & Karen Newirth, of New York, Joshua D. Rogaczewski & Johnny H. Walker, of the District of Columbia, & Kevin M. Bolan for the Innocence Network.      GANTS, C.J.  In the early morning of September 10, 2011, the defendant slashed the face of the victim, Zachary Sevigny, with a box cutter while the victim was sitting in the driver’s seat of his vehicle.  A Superior Court jury found the defendant guilty of mayhem, in violation of G. L. c. 265, § 14; assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon, in violation of G. L. c. 265, § 15A (b); and breaking and entering a vehicle in the nighttime with the intent to commit a felony, in violation of G. L. c. 266, § 16.[1]  On appeal, the defendant claims that the judge erred by giving the model jury instruction regarding eyewitness identification that we adopted in Commonwealth v. Rodriguez, 378 Mass. 296, 310-311 (Appendix) (1979), rather than the instruction he requested, which would have informed the jury about various scientific principles regarding eyewitness identification.  We conclude that the judge did not err by declining to instruct the jury about these principles where the defendant offered no expert testimony, scholarly articles, or treatises that established that these principles were “so generally accepted that . . . a standard jury instruction stating [those principles] would be appropriate.”  Commonwealth v. Santoli, 424 Mass. 837, 845 (1997), citing Commonwealth v. Hyatt, 419 Mass. 815, 818-819 […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - January 13, 2015 at 3:06 am

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