Davis v. State

Decision Date24 November 1981
Docket NumberNo. 680S179,680S179
Citation428 N.E.2d 18
PartiesRaymond Miles DAVIS, Appellant (Defendant Below), v. STATE of Indiana, Appellee (Plaintiff Below).
CourtIndiana Supreme Court

Linda M. Wagoner, Indianapolis, for appellant.

Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen., Carolyn M. Brawner, Deputy Atty. Gen., Indianapolis, for appellee.

PRENTICE, Justice.

Defendant (Appellant) after trial by jury was convicted of Theft, Ind.Code § 35-17-5-3(1)(a) (Burns 1975), Aggravated Assault and Battery, Ind.Code § 35-13-3-1 (Burns 1975), and three (3) counts of Armed Robbery, Ind.Code § 35-12-1-1 (Burns 1975). He was sentenced to five terms of imprisonment, the longest of which is fifteen (15) years. This belated appeal presents the following issues:

(1) Whether the trial court erred in limiting defense counsel's voir dire of the jury to twenty minutes.

(2) Whether Defendant was denied due process of law through the Prosecutor's failure to re-submit a previously arranged plea agreement.

ISSUE I

Defendant contends that he was denied his right to an impartial jury, because the trial court limited counsels' voir dire of the jury to twenty minutes. Defendant admits that the record shows no objection to the twenty minute limitation; however, he urges us to fault the court reporter for this inadequacy. Additionally, the record contains no transcript of the voir dire, but rather it only evidences that a voir dire occurred:

"Before the Honorable William Dougherty, Special Judge, State by Montgomery and Jackson, defendant Davis in person and by counsel Pete Pappas, and comes the regular panel who are sworn to give true answers. Court examines jury and passes jury to the state. State examines jury and passes for cause. Defendant examines jury and passes for cause. State examines jury and passes for cause. State accepts jury, defendant accepts jury, and jury consisting of the following are sworn. * * *."

Under Johnson v. State, (1980) Ind., 399 N.E.2d 360, 362 this record discloses no error for review. If a proper objection was made but not recorded, Defendant's remedy was to request the trial court to make the necessary correction under Ind.R.App.P. 7.2(C). Even if we assume that the voir dire occurred, as Defendant asserts that it did, we find no error. Our decisions have repeatedly upheld a twenty minute per side limitation on voir dire in criminal cases, where the trial court conducts the initial voir dire examination and Defendant may submit additional Questions in writing. Lynn v. State, (1979) Ind., 392 N.E.2d 449, 450-51; Tyson v. State, (1979) Ind., 386 N.E.2d 1185, 1190; Roberts v. State, (1978) 268 Ind. 127, 130, 373 N.E.2d 1103, 1105-06; Hart v. State, (1976) 265 Ind. 145, 150-51, 352 N.E.2d 712, 716-17; Owens v. State, (1975) 263 Ind. 487, 501-02, 333 N.E.2d 745, 752-53. The record before us does not show whether or not this procedure was followed; however, we believe that the procedure is a fair and proper way to cure the abuses of voir dire examination which we discussed in Robinson v. State, (1973) 260 Ind. 517, 520-21, 297 N.E.2d 409, 411-12. 1

ISSUE II

During trial Defendant testified in support of a motion to suppress his oral confession. The confession was ruled inadmissible. Defendant stated that he made the statements and agreed to plead guilty and to testify against one, Jenkins, in exchange for a sentence of one to ten years imprisonment. The agreement was reduced to writing and signed by Defendant; however, it was rejected by the Marion County Criminal Court, after Defendant had testified for the State against Jenkins. Thereafter, Defendant obtained a change of judge. The agreement is not contained in the record, and upon learning of it, the trial court stated:

"THE COURT: Let it be known right now that there is no plea bargaining agreement in this Court and this trial and the Court is not aware of any plea bargaining made by the Defendant or the State or anything. We are here today to try the charges of which this man is here for.

"MR. PAPPAS: No question about it, Judge, but I am merely trying to get to how we got to this alleged extra-judicial confession or admission or whatever it might be. There is no question that this Court had no involvement in this." (emphasis added).

The record does not reflect any motion made prior to the commencement of trial, which informed the trial judge that a plea agreement had been reached, and therefore, that trial was unnecessary. Rather, Defendant contends that because he pled guilty 2 and testified in reliance upon the agreement, "It is axiomatic that the failure of the prosecutor to attempt to secure acceptance of the agreement, which had already been relied upon, constituted a failure by the...

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5 cases
  • Zachary v. State
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court
    • October 23, 1984
    ...where the trial court conducts the initial voir dire examination and defendant may submit additional questions in writing. Davis v. State, (1981) Ind., 428 N.E.2d 18; Lynn v. State, (1979) 271 Ind. 297, 392 N.E.2d 449; Hart v. State, (1976) 265 Ind. 145, 352 N.E.2d Defendant admits the cour......
  • Lucas v. State
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court
    • November 14, 1986
    ...conducted the initial voir dire examination and defense counsel was allowed to submit additional questions in writing. Davis v. State (1981), Ind., 428 N.E.2d 18; Lynn v. State (1979), 271 Ind. 297, 392 N.E.2d 449; Hart v. State (1976), 265 Ind. 145, 352 N.E.2d 712. However, we have not gon......
  • Murphy v. State
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court
    • October 23, 1984
    ...where the trial court conducts the initial voir dire examination and defendant may submit additional questions in writing. Davis v. State, (1981) Ind., 428 N.E.2d 18; Lynn v. State, (1979) 271 Ind. 297, 392 N.E.2d 449; Hart v. State, (1976) 265 Ind. 145, 352 N.E.2d Defendant admits the cour......
  • Inman v. State, 184S3
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court
    • August 29, 1985
    ...there was yet time for the court to take appropriate action. See, Solomon v. State (1982), Ind., 439 N.E.2d 570, 574; Davis v. State (1981), Ind., 428 N.E.2d 18, 20. Notwithstanding the procedural unavailability of this assignment, we address the claim briefly because of our particular sens......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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