Posts tagged "Holley"

Commonwealth v. Holley (and five companion cases) (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-197-17)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.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; SJCReporter@sjc.state.ma.us   SJC-12130   COMMONWEALTH  vs.  REGINALD HOLLEY (and five companion cases[1]).       Suffolk.     September 8, 2017. – December 14, 2017.   Present:  Gants, C.J., Lenk, Gaziano, Budd, & Kafker, JJ.     Homicide.  Robbery.  Firearms.  Joint Enterprise.  Felony-Murder Rule.  Search and Seizure, Warrant, Probable cause.  Constitutional Law, Probable cause.  Probable Cause.  Cellular Telephone.  Jury and Jurors.  Evidence, Joint enterprise, Prior misconduct.  Practice, Criminal, Capital case, Motion to suppress, Warrant, Instructions to jury, Jury and jurors, Deliberation of jury, Substitution of alternate juror, Severance.       Indictments found and returned in the Superior Court Department on December 12, 2012.   Pretrial motions to suppress evidence were heard by Patrick F. Brady, J., and the cases were tried before him.     Elizabeth A. Billowitz for Reginald Holley. Neil L. Fishman for Oasis Pritchett. Cailin M. Campbell, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth.     LENK, J.  On the morning of October 17, 2012, Alfonso Rivas was in his apartment building anticipating a sale of marijuana to Reginald Holley when Rivas was fatally shot in the head.  Holley and Oasis Pritchett were convicted of felony-murder in the first degree, armed robbery, and possession of a firearm without a license, as joint venturers, in connection with the victim’s death.  Prior to trial, both defendants had moved unsuccessfully to suppress text messages obtained from their cellular service provider.  The text messages, which were introduced at trial, contained incriminating statements involving the defendants’ plan to steal marijuana from the victim on the morning of the shooting. In this direct appeal, Holley and Pritchett challenge the sufficiency of the evidence supporting their felony-murder convictions and the introduction of their text messages at trial.  They argue also that the judge erred in declining to instruct the jury on felony-murder in the second degree, and in dismissing a deliberating juror who was ill.  Pritchett argues separately that the judge erred by denying his motion to sever, admitting evidence of prior bad acts, and declining to instruct the jury on the requirements of the hearsay exemption concerning joint venturer statements.  Each defendant also requests relief under G. L. c. 278, § 33E.  We affirm the convictions and, after careful review of the record, decline to set aside the verdicts or reduce the degree of guilt pursuant to our authority under G. L. c. 278, § 33E. Facts.  We recite the facts the jury […]

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Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - December 14, 2017 at 6:05 pm

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