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Commonwealth v. Veronneau (Lawyers Weekly No. 11-147-16)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.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   15-P-169                                        Appeals Court   COMMONWEALTH  vs.  ROBERT VERONNEAU.     No. 15-P-169.   Bristol.     March 9, 2016. – October 11, 2016.   Present:  Cypher, Cohen, & Neyman, JJ.     Firearms.  Intoxication.  Practice, Criminal, Findings by judge, Probation.  Evidence, Judicial notice, Intoxication.  Constitutional Law, Right to bear arms.       Complaint received and sworn to in the New Bedford Division of the District Court Department on May 24, 2013.   The case was heard by J. Thomas Kirkman, J.     John G. Mateus for the defendant. Corey T. Mastin, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth.     COHEN, J.  The defendant was tried in the District Court, jury-waived, on charges of carrying a loaded firearm while under the influence of intoxicating liquor (FUI), see G. L. c. 269, § 10H; negligent operation of a motor vehicle, see G. L. c. 90, § 24(2)(a); operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor (OUI), second offense, see G. L. c. 90, § 24(1)(a)(1); and two civil motor vehicle infractions, speeding and marked lanes violation.  The judge found the defendant guilty of FUI, and imposed a sentence of one year of unsupervised probation with a condition that he not possess firearms or have a firearm license during that period.  The judge also found the defendant at fault for the civil motor vehicle infractions, and imposed fines; however, the judge found the defendant not guilty of negligent operation of a motor vehicle and OUI.  The defendant’s primary contention on appeal is that his conviction of FUI is fatally inconsistent with his acquittal of OUI.  After consideration of this and other arguments presented by the defendant, we affirm. Background.  The evidence, taken in the light most favorable to the Commonwealth, see Commonwealth v. Latimore, 378 Mass. 671, 677-678 (1979), may be summarized as follows.  On May 23, 2013, State police Trooper Paul Gifford was patrolling in a marked cruiser on Route 18 in New Bedford, which has a posted speed limit of fifty miles per hour.  It was raining heavily.  The trooper observed a vehicle entering Route 18 from the east ramp of Route 495, at a speed that he estimated to be eighty-two miles per hour.  The vehicle accelerated, changed lanes twice, passed three other vehicles, drifted to the right, drove in the breakdown lane, and then swerved back into the right travel lane.  Those maneuvers occurred without use […]

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Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - October 12, 2016 at 3:59 am

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