Posts tagged "1017914"

Commonwealth v. Garcia (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-179-14)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.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; SJCReporter@sjc.state.ma.us   SJC-11127 COMMONWEALTH  vs.  JOONEL GARCIA. Essex.     December 6, 2013. – October 29, 2014.   Present:  Spina, Cordy, Botsford, Duffly, & Lenk, JJ. Homicide.  Home Invasion.  Burglary.  Armed Assault with Intent to Rob.  Felony-Murder Rule.  Joint Enterprise.  Evidence, Joint venturer, Impeachment of credibility, Cross-examination, Redirect examination, Accident.  Constitutional Law, Assistance of counsel.  Practice, Criminal, Required finding, Instructions to jury, Assistance of counsel, Capital case.  Witness, Impeachment, Cross-examination, Redirect examination.     Indictments found and returned in the Superior Court Department on March 1, 2006.   The cases were tried before David A. Lowy, J.     Jeffrey L. Baler for the defendant. Kenneth E. Steinfield, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth.     DUFFLY, J.  The defendant was indicted on charges of murder in the first degree and five related offenses in connection with the death of Rafael Castro on August 26, 2004.1  A Superior Court jury found the defendant guilty of murder in the first degree on theories of extreme atrocity or cruelty and felony-murder, based on the underlying felonies of both home invasion and armed or assaultive burglary.  The jury also found the defendant guilty of the other charges.  The jury did not specify whether they found the defendant guilty of any of the offenses as a principal or as a joint venturer. On appeal, the defendant maintains that the evidence was insufficient to show that he shared the requisite intent to commit the crimes charged.  The defendant contends also that his right to a fair trial was denied when he was not permitted to impeach a Commonwealth witness by confronting her with a child she observed outside the court room, whom she testified she believed to be her deceased child, although the witness was permitted on redirect examination to testify to the reasons she had formed that belief.  In addition, the defendant asserts that a new trial is required because the judge erroneously declined to give two requested jury instructions, and because his counsel was ineffective for failing to object when the judge instructed that accident was not a defense to the killing.  The defendant also requests that we exercise our authority to provide relief pursuant to G. L. c. 278, § 33E.  We affirm the convictions, and discern no reason to grant a new trial or to reduce the verdict of murder in the first degree to a lesser degree of […]

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Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - October 29, 2014 at 8:19 pm

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