Hill v. State, CR-81-18

CourtSupreme Court of Arkansas
Citation628 S.W.2d 284,275 Ark. 71
Docket NumberNo. CR-81-18,CR-81-18
PartiesDarrell Wayne HILL, Appellant, v. STATE of Arkansas, Appellee.
Decision Date08 February 1982

Page 284

628 S.W.2d 284
275 Ark. 71
Darrell Wayne HILL, Appellant,
STATE of Arkansas, Appellee.
No. CR-81-18.
Supreme Court of Arkansas.
Feb. 8, 1982.
Rehearing Denied March 15, 1982.

Page 286

[275 Ark. 76] William H. McKimm, Mount Ida, and Bob Keeter, Mena, for appellant.

Steve Clark, Atty. Gen. by Leslie M. Powell, Asst. Atty. Gen., Little Rock, for appellee.

ADKISSON, Chief Justice.

On July 11, 1980, following a jury trial, appellant, Darrell Wayne Hill, was convicted and sentenced for capital felony murder (death), kidnapping (50 years), and aggravated robbery (50 years) in connection with offenses against Donald Lee Teague; and [275 Ark. 77] for attempted capital murder (life), kidnapping (50 years), and aggravated robbery (50 years) in connection with offenses against E. L. Ward. The 50-year sentences were set to run consecutively to the life sentence.

Page 287

We affirm the conviction and sentence for capital felony murder but set aside the lesser included offenses of kidnapping and aggravated robbery in connection with offenses against Donald Lee Teague. Ark.Stat.Ann. § 41-105(1)(a), (2)(a) (Repl.1977) prohibits the entry of a judgment of conviction on capital felony murder or attempted capital felony murder and the underlying specified felony or felonies. Swaite v. State, 272 Ark. 128, 612 S.W.2d 307 (1981); Singleton v. State, 274 Ark. 126, 623 S.W.2d 180 (1981). Generally, this Court will not consider errors raised for the first time on appeal; however, as we stated in Singleton, supra, in death cases we will consider errors argued for the first time on direct appeal where prejudice is conclusively shown by the record and this Court would unquestionably require the trial court to grant relief under Rule 37.

We affirm the convictions and sentences for attempted capital felony murder, kidnapping, and aggravated robbery in connection with offenses against E. L. Ward. The objection that kidnapping and aggravated robbery are offenses included in the offense of attempted capital felony murder was not raised in the lower court. This Court will not consider this issue when raised for the first time on appeal except in death cases. Rowe v. State, 271 Ark. 20, 607 S.W.2d 657 (1980). Also see Rowe v. State, Ark. 622 S.W.2d 16 (1982).


On February 7, 1980, at approximately 2:00 p. m. appellant drove into E. L. Ward's Service Station in Pencil Bluff, Montgomery County, in a maroon Thunderbird. Ward checked his radiator and filled his car with gas. At this time Donald Teague, a Game and Fish Commission Officer, drove up, also wanting gas, so Ward went inside the garage to clear the pumps. Appellant, who was waiting inside the garage, pulled a gun on Ward and demanded his money. He [275 Ark. 78] then ordered Ward to put the money from the cash register into a money bag along with his wallet. At this time Teague entered the garage, and appellant pointed the gun at Teague, told him to put his billfold in the money bag, and told both men that they were going for a ride. Teague was instructed to drive the car and Ward to bring the money bag. While riding, appellant took the money from Ward's wallet and put it in his pocket. Teague was forced to drive to a gravel road off of Highway 88. Appellant then had Teague stop the car, marched the men into some weeds, and forced them to lie down with their hands behind them. Appellant shot Teague several times, killing him. Ward begged him to quit shooting, but appellant then shot at Ward four times, wounding him. Ward dropped into the weeds and did not move or speak until appellant had driven away. He then hollered at Teague, who did not respond, so he crawled back to the road. A pulpwood driver found him there later that afternoon. Ward gave the police a description of his assailant and the car he was driving before he was rushed to a hospital in Hot Springs.

That afternoon at 4:05 p. m. law enforcement offices in the surrounding area began receiving NCIC (National Crime Information Center) radio dispatches regarding these crimes. The Hot Springs Police Department broadcast the description of a white male, 45 to 50 years old, medium build, 160 lbs, rough skinned face, black hair, last seen wearing a gray suit with a blue shirt; vehicle and license described as late model Ford Thunderbird, maroon in color, with dark blue or black lettering on a white license plate. The occupant was described as being armed and extremely dangerous.

At 6:25 p. m. Hot Springs Police Officer Buck observed a vehicle matching this description with a white Oklahoma license plate with dark letters going westbound on Grand in Hot Springs; he radioed in that he was following the car. He stopped the vehicle at about the same time Officer Ward arrived to back him up. Officer Buck used a public address system to advise appellant to step out of the car and keep his hands in plain sight. Officer Buck conducted a frisk search of appellant for weapons. Meanwhile,

Page 288

Officer Ward searched [275 Ark. 79] the immediate area of the car where appellant had been sitting, finding a brown paper sack containing a loaded Charter Arms .38 Special and a large quantity of coins under the front seat, driver's side. Appellant was then placed in Officer Buck's vehicle and transported to the police station at approximately 6:45 p. m. Neither of these officers testified during the trial regarding a description of the appellant before he was searched: neither while appellant was inside the car, nor after he was directed to stand behind it.

The evidence as set out above and the positive results of the ballistics tests on the gun found in appellant's car lead us to conclude that appellant's convictions were supported by overwhelming evidence of guilt.


Appellant argues that the stop and search of his vehicle by the police was unreasonable and that the pistol seized from under the driver's seat should have been suppressed as the fruit of an illegal search. We disagree. The search of the car was reasonable under the circumstances. 1 Rule 3.1, Ark.Rules Crim.Proc., Ark.Stat.Ann., Vol. 4A (Repl.1977) provides:

Rule 3.1 Stopping and Detention of Person: Time Limit.

A law enforcement officer lawfully present in any place may, in the performance of his duties, stop and detain any person who he reasonably suspects is committing, has committed, or is about to commit (1) a felony, or (2) a misdemeanor involving danger of forcible injury to persons or of appropriation of or damage to property, if such action is reasonably necessary either to obtain or verify the identification of the person or to determine the lawfulness of his conduct. An officer acting under this rule may require [275 Ark. 80] the person to remain in or near such place in the officer's presence for a period of not more than fifteen (15) minutes or for such time as is reasonable under the circumstances. At the end of such period the person detained shall be released without further restraint, or arrested and charged with an offense. (Emphasis added)

Did the officer reasonably suspect the appellant had committed a felony? Rule 2.1 defines reasonable suspicion as:

(A) suspicion based on facts or circumstances which of themselves do not give rise to the probable cause requisite to justify a lawful arrest, but which give rise to more than a bare suspicion; that is, a suspicion that is reasonable as opposed to an imaginary or purely conjectural suspicion.

The courts have used various terms to describe how much cause or suspicion is necessary or reasonable in order to stop a person or vehicle. The common thread which runs through the decisions makes it clear that the justification for the investigative stop depends upon whether, under the totality of the circumstances, the police have specific, particularized, and articulable reasons indicating the person or vehicle may be involved in criminal activity. U. S. v. Cortez, 449 U.S. 411, 101 S.Ct. 690, 66 L.Ed.2d 621 (1981); Michigan v. Summers, --- U.S. ----, 101 S.Ct. 2587, 69 L.Ed.2d 340 (1981); Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1, 88 S.Ct. 1868, 20 L.Ed.2d 889 (1967).

Here the police had reasonable suspicion upon which to base an investigatory stop of appellant's late model maroon Ford Thunderbird exhibiting an Oklahoma license plate with a white background and dark letters. The car matched the description of the police broadcast. It was not likely that another vehicle of that description was in the Montgomery-Garland County area at that time. Also, the crimes had just recently been committed in the small community of Pencil Bluff in neighboring Montgomery County.

Page 289

Since the investigatory stop was justified, the police were then allowed to make a limited search for weapons to protect themselves from attack by a suspect they had every [275 Ark. 81] reason to believe was armed and very dangerous. Adams v. Williams, 407 U.S. 143, 92 S.Ct. 1921, 32 L.Ed.2d 612 (1972). Rule 3.4, Ark.Rules Crim.Proc. specifically authorizes a search for weapons in a situation such as existed here:

If a law enforcement officer who has detained a person under Rule 3.1 reasonably suspects that the person is armed and presently dangerous to the officer or others, the officer or someone designated by him may search the outer clothing of such person and the immediate surroundings for, and seize, any weapon or other dangerous thing which may be used against the officer or others. In no event shall this search be more extensive than is reasonably necessary to ensure the safety of the officer or others. (Emphasis added)

This rule is consistent with the rule set forth in Terry v. Ohio, supra, which emphasizes that the purpose of the protective search is wholly for the safety of the police officer:

We are now concerned with more than the governmental interest in investigating crime; in addition, there is the more immediate interest of the police officer in taking steps to assure himself that the person with whom he is...

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