Posts tagged "1018517"

Brangan v. Commonwealth (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-185-17)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.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-12284   JAHMAL BRANGAN  vs.  COMMONWEALTH.       Suffolk.     September 7, 2017. – November 14, 2017.   Present:  Gants, C.J., Gaziano, Budd, Cypher, & Kafker, JJ.     Practice, Criminal, Double jeopardy, Indictment, Conduct of prosecutor, Argument by prosecutor.  Robbery.       Civil action commenced in the Supreme Judicial Court for the county of Suffolk on December 19, 2016.   The case was considered by Lowy, J.     Merritt Schnipper for the defendant. Amal Bala, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth.     CYPHER, J.  The petitioner, Jahmal Brangan, appeals from the denial, by a single justice of the county court, of his petition for relief from the denial of his motion to dismiss the indictment against him for armed robbery while masked by the trial judge, after the Commonwealth’s closing argument led to a mistrial.  Brangan argues that principles of double jeopardy forbid his retrial because the Commonwealth did not present sufficient evidence to sustain a guilty finding or, alternatively, the prosecutor’s misconduct was so egregious that it warranted a dismissal of the indictment.  We affirm the decision of the single justice. Background.  The following facts are taken from Commonwealth v. Brangan, 475 Mass. 143 (2016), and from the trial record.[1] In January, 2014, a bank in Springfield was robbed.  The robber entered the bank with his face obscured by a hat and sunglasses.  He was wearing gloves.  His nose and his cheeks were nonetheless visible.  He approached a teller’s window, but that window was closed so the teller asked him to move to another teller window.  He then approached a second teller window and handed a note to that teller.  The note stated that the robber had a weapon and demanded all of the teller’s cash.  The teller complied and gave the robber an envelope with less than $ 1,000 in cash.  The robber fled, and the police arrived shortly thereafter.  The police processed the note for fingerprints within hours of the crime.  On the note, the police found Brangan’s thumbprint.  They also found a right palm print that was unusable for determining a match.  Brangan was arrested. At trial, both bank tellers testified about the robber’s appearance.  The tellers each described her recollection of the robber’s race, skin tone, and nose shape and size.  One teller described the robber as having acne scars on his […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - November 14, 2017 at 3:23 pm

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