Posts tagged "1002717"

Commonwealth v. Goddard (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-027-17)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.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-11955   COMMONWEALTH  vs.  WILLIAM GODDARD.       Worcester.     October 11, 2016. – February 9, 2017.   Present:  Gants, C.J., Hines, Gaziano, Lowy, & Budd, JJ.     Homicide.  Evidence, Expert opinion.  Witness, Expert.  Practice, Criminal, Capital case, Argument by prosecutor.       Indictments found and returned in the Superior Court Department on June 5, 2008.   The cases were tried before Richard T. Tucker, J.     Robert S. Sinsheimer for the defendant. Ellyn H. Lazar-Moore, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth.     LOWY, J.  The jury convicted the defendant, William Goddard, of murder in the first degree on the theory of deliberate premeditation.[1]  On appeal, the defendant argues that (1) the trial judge erred by permitting the Commonwealth’s expert witness to testify that the defendant had premeditated the killing, (2) the same expert was impermissibly permitted to state the basis of her opinion on direct examination, and (3) the prosecutor made statements not supported by evidence during closing arguments.  We affirm the convictions and decline to grant relief under G. L. c. 278, § 33E. Background.  We summarize the facts the jury could have found and reserve other details for discussion of specific issues.  On the morning of January 28, 2008, the defendant shot and killed his former girl friend (victim).  The victim and the defendant met in October, 2005, developed a romantic relationship, and began living together.  By August, 2007, their relationship began to deteriorate, partly because the defendant suspected the victim was having an affair with her boss.  In October, 2007, the relationship between the victim and the defendant ended when she kicked him out of the house.  The defendant did not take the break up well. On the morning of the murder, the defendant arrived in his automobile at the automotive shop where the victim worked.  The defendant forced an employee at gunpoint to bring him to the office that the victim shared with her boss. Upon entering the office, the defendant said to the victim, “[S]hut up.  Don’t move.  Shut up.  Don’t move.”  The victim responded, “Bill, what are you doing?”  The defendant then shot the victim a single time in the neck, killing her in a matter of minutes.  The defendant also shot the boss in the left arm; he lay on the ground to “play[] dead.”  The defendant then attempted to […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - February 9, 2017 at 9:59 pm

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