477 N.E.2d 883 (Ind. 1985), 283S55, Robinson v. State

Docket Nº283S55.
Citation477 N.E.2d 883
Party NameRaymond Eugene ROBINSON, Sr., Appellant, v. STATE of Indiana, Appellee.
Case DateMay 22, 1985
CourtSupreme Court of Indiana

Page 883

477 N.E.2d 883 (Ind. 1985)

Raymond Eugene ROBINSON, Sr., Appellant,

v.

STATE of Indiana, Appellee.

No. 283S55.

Supreme Court of Indiana.

May 22, 1985

Page 884

John G. Bunner, Evansville, for appellant.

Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen., John D. Shuman, Deputy Atty. Gen., Indianapolis, for appellee.

DeBRULER, Justice.

This is a direct appeal from a conviction of murder Ind.Code Sec. 35-42-1-1. The case was tried before a jury. Appellant received a sentence of sixty years.

Appellant raises four issues on appeal: (1) whether trial court erred in allowing the lawyer of the victim's mother to be present during his testimony before the grand jury; (2) whether trial court erred in refusing to give his tendered instructions, Nos. 5 and 7; (3) whether the evidence was sufficient to support his conviction for murder; (4) the sentence imposed was manifestly unreasonable.

Page 885

These are the facts that tend to support the determination of guilt. The three-year old victim and her mother lived in Evansville with appellant and his wife. His wife was the victim's mother's cousin. On August 5, 1981, appellant and his wife took their young son to the doctor's office; they left their other children and the victim in the care of a babysitter. According to the testimony of both the babysitter and appellant's wife, appellant viciously beat the victim because she had wet her bed while taking a nap. This beating included such acts as hitting the victim, throwing her against a wall, picking her up by the ears and dropping her head-first on the floor, and kicking her. After the beating, the victim lost consciousness, and she was taken to the hospital. The victim survived in the hospital for seven days. Her breathing was maintained artificially; however, she died as a result of pulmonary infection and extensive brain damage. Testimony at trial established that the beating caused her death.

I

Appellant argues that the grand jury proceedings were defective and denied him his rights to a fair trial and due process. He contends that it was improper to allow the victim's mother's counsel to be present at the grand jury proceedings. The victim's mother was a suspect in her child's murder; however, after the grand jury proceeding, the murder charge was dismissed and a charge of child neglect was lodged. She was questioned by her counsel during the grand jury proceeding. The trial court denied appellant's Supplemental Motion to Dismiss the indictment. The trial court explained its ruling in this manner:

Further show that the Court having previously dealt with the witness, Mabel Chase, has noted that she is a person of low intelligence and the Court exercises its option in allowing her attorney to be present with her during her appearance and only during her appearance before the Grand Jury.

In Indiana there is no per se rule presuming prejudice when unauthorized persons appear before the Grand Jury, or even when those persons participate in the interrogation of witnesses. Fair v. State (1977), 266 Ind. 380, 364 N.E.2d 1007. A defendant is not entitled to reversal by reason of the presence of outsiders in the grand jury room while the grand jury is hearing testimony, unless the defendant can demonstrate prejudice as a result. See Rennert v. State (1975), 263 Ind. 274, 329 N.E.2d 595.

In State v. Hardy (1980), Ind., 406 N.E.2d 313, the defendant successfully met that burden by showing that the regular prosecutor who had been disqualified because of a conflict of interest actually conducted the grand jury proceedings investigating the local sheriff. The trial court dismissed the indictments and was upheld. In the present case, we are restricted to the record. Burkhart v. Ogle (1891), 126 Ind. 599, 26 N.E. 152. It shows the fact of questioning by private counsel and the prosecutor, and the fact that her personal charge was thereafter reduced. The opportunity for influencing the jury to return a wrongful indictment was restricted to the one witness and her questioning. A potential of like magnitude was presented by the questioning of her...

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10 practice notes
  • 578 N.E.2d 716 (Ind.App. 5 Dist. 1991), 48A02-9010-CR-568, May v. State
    • United States
    • Indiana Court of Appeals of Indiana
    • September 23, 1991
    ...reason why each factor is aggravating or mitigating, and (3) an evaluation and balancing of the factors. Robinson v. State (1985), Ind., 477 N.E.2d 883. If an explanation appears inadequate, the appellate court may order an enhanced sentence reduced to the presumptive, or change consecutive......
  • 515 N.E.2d 1082 (Ind. 1987), 49S00-8609-CR-817, Oglesby v. State
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • December 2, 1987
    ...by other instructions which were given, the Court is not bound to read the tendered instruction. See Robinson v. State (1985), Ind., 477 N.E.2d 883, 886; Wallace v. State (1985), Ind., 474 N.E.2d 1006, 1008. Since the subject was well covered by the trial court's given instructions, there w......
  • 508 N.E.2d 1274 (Ind. 1987), 1185S466, Dumbsky v. State
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • June 18, 1987
    ...to be mitigating or aggravating. Third, it must balance the mitigating and aggravating factors. Robinson v. State (1985), Ind., 477 N.E.2d 883, 886. These requirements serve a dual purpose. They guard against arbitrary and capricious sentencing, and they provide an adequate basis for appell......
  • 489 N.E.2d 68 (Ind. 1986), 584S161, Henderson v. State
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • February 28, 1986
    ...in order to determine if the aggravating circumstances offset the mitigating Page 72 circumstances. Robinson v. State (1985), Ind., 477 N.E.2d 883. The purposes for requiring a specific statement of reasons for enhancing a sentence are twofold. First, it insures the judge considered only pr......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
10 cases
  • 578 N.E.2d 716 (Ind.App. 5 Dist. 1991), 48A02-9010-CR-568, May v. State
    • United States
    • Indiana Court of Appeals of Indiana
    • September 23, 1991
    ...reason why each factor is aggravating or mitigating, and (3) an evaluation and balancing of the factors. Robinson v. State (1985), Ind., 477 N.E.2d 883. If an explanation appears inadequate, the appellate court may order an enhanced sentence reduced to the presumptive, or change consecutive......
  • 515 N.E.2d 1082 (Ind. 1987), 49S00-8609-CR-817, Oglesby v. State
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • December 2, 1987
    ...by other instructions which were given, the Court is not bound to read the tendered instruction. See Robinson v. State (1985), Ind., 477 N.E.2d 883, 886; Wallace v. State (1985), Ind., 474 N.E.2d 1006, 1008. Since the subject was well covered by the trial court's given instructions, there w......
  • 508 N.E.2d 1274 (Ind. 1987), 1185S466, Dumbsky v. State
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • June 18, 1987
    ...to be mitigating or aggravating. Third, it must balance the mitigating and aggravating factors. Robinson v. State (1985), Ind., 477 N.E.2d 883, 886. These requirements serve a dual purpose. They guard against arbitrary and capricious sentencing, and they provide an adequate basis for appell......
  • 489 N.E.2d 68 (Ind. 1986), 584S161, Henderson v. State
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • February 28, 1986
    ...in order to determine if the aggravating circumstances offset the mitigating Page 72 circumstances. Robinson v. State (1985), Ind., 477 N.E.2d 883. The purposes for requiring a specific statement of reasons for enhancing a sentence are twofold. First, it insures the judge considered only pr......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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