Lambrix v. State, No. 73348

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Florida
Writing for the CourtPER CURIAM; EHRLICH; KOGAN; KOGAN
Citation534 So.2d 1151,13 Fla. L. Weekly 697
Decision Date30 November 1988
Docket NumberNo. 73348
Parties13 Fla. L. Weekly 697 Cary Michael LAMBRIX, Appellant, v. STATE of Florida, Appellee.

Page 1151

534 So.2d 1151
13 Fla. L. Weekly 697
Cary Michael LAMBRIX, Appellant,
v.
STATE of Florida, Appellee.
No. 73348.
Supreme Court of Florida.
Nov. 30, 1988.

Page 1152

Larry Helm Spalding, Capital Collateral Representative and Billy H. Nolas, Staff Atty., Office of the Capital Collateral Representative, Tallahassee, for appellant.

Robert A. Butterworth, Atty. Gen. and Robert J. Krauss, Asst. Atty. Gen., Tampa, for appellee.

PER CURIAM.

Cary Michael Lambrix, a state prisoner under a sentence and warrant of death, appeals from the trial court's denial of his motion for postconviction relief and seeks a stay of execution. We have jurisdiction. Art. V, § 3(b)(1), Fla. Const.

Lambrix was indicted for and convicted of the 1983 double murder of two dinner guests. His conviction and sentence of death were affirmed by this Court in Lambrix v. State, 494 So.2d 1143 (Fla.1986). Our opinion gave the following summary of the facts surrounding the killings:

On the evening of February 5, 1983, Lambrix and Frances Smith, his roommate, went to a tavern where they met Clarence Moore, a/k/a Lawrence Lamberson, and Aleisha Bryant. Late that evening, they all ventured to Lambrix' trailer to eat spaghetti. Shortly after their arrival, Lambrix and Moore went outside. Lambrix returned about twenty minutes later and requested Bryant to go outside with him. About forty-five minutes later Lambrix returned alone. Smith testified that Lambrix was carrying a tire tool and had blood on his person and clothing. Lambrix told Smith that he killed both Bryant and Moore. He mentioned that he choked and stomped on Bryant and hit Moore over the head. Smith and Lambrix proceeded to eat spaghetti, wash up and bury the two bodies behind the trailer. After burying the bodies, Lambrix and Smith went back to the trailer to wash up. They then took Moore's Cadillac and disposed of the tire tool and Lambrix' bloody shirt in a nearby stream.

Id. at 1145. We later denied a habeas corpus petition alleging ineffective assistance of appellate counsel. Lambrix v. Dugger, 529 So.2d 1110 (Fla.1988).

Following the issuance of the death warrant, Lambrix filed a motion for postconviction relief in the trial court. The court denied the motion without holding an evidentiary hearing, and Lambrix took this appeal. In order to have time to properly address the appeal, we stayed until noon of December 2, 1988, the execution originally scheduled for November 30, 1988.

Lambrix's motion asserted a number of claims. However, his appeal addresses only two issues, both of which are related to his consumption of alcohol.

Page 1153

The record of the trial contained the following testimony as to Lambrix's alcohol consumption and its effects:

1. Frances Smith, the state's primary witness, testified that Lambrix had been drinking beer and mixed drinks in a bar where they made the acquaintance of the two victims; that of the four persons, only Clarence Moore appeared to be intoxicated; that the four went to Lambrix's trailer to eat spaghetti and carried with them a bottle of whiskey and some mixer; that Lambrix "wasn't drinking a whole lot" but was drinking "pretty good"; and that Lambrix "acted high" when they were back at the trailer, but "[i]t's hard to tell about Cary with anything.... I don't know if he was high or not."

2. John Chezem, a neighbor from whom Lambrix borrowed the shovel he used to bury the bodies, testified that on the night of the murders he "couldn't tell" if Lambrix was intoxicated. "He acted normal to me."

3. Preston Branch, a longtime acquaintance of Lambrix's, testified that he accompanied Lambrix from Plant City in Hillsborough County, back to the trailer, in Glades County, the day after the killing. He said Lambrix drank "at least two six-packs of beer" but did not consider him drunk.

The trial judge declined to give a jury instruction on the defense of voluntary intoxication. One of the grounds of the petition for habeas corpus later filed in this Court was that appellate counsel was ineffective for failing to argue on appeal that the court erred in refusing to instruct on voluntary intoxication. We rejected this argument on the premise that the evidence was not persuasive that Lambrix was intoxicated.

Lambrix now argues that trial counsel was ineffective (1) in failing to develop additional evidence that would have entitled him to obtain an instruction on voluntary intoxication, and (2) in not introducing evidence of Lambrix's alcoholism during the penalty phase of the trial.

In his motion for postconviction relief, Lambrix alleged that had they been asked by defense counsel several family members were prepared to testify concerning Lambrix's long history of drinking. He also asserted that Dr. Whitman, who had been appointed prior to trial to evaluate Lambrix's competency to stand trial and his sanity at the time of the offense, told defense counsel at that time that Lambrix suffered from substance abuse disorder and that alcohol abuse played a significant part in the offense. Finally, Lambrix alleged that he had been recently examined by an expert in addictionology who would testify that Lambrix suffers from alcohol dependency and that the amount of alcohol ingested by him on the night of the offense rendered him intoxicated to the extent that he was incapable of forming the specific intent necessary to a conviction of first-degree murder. Because we are passing on the facial sufficiency of the motion, we must accept the allegations of fact as true for purposes of this appeal.

In Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668, 104 S.Ct. 2052, 80 L.Ed.2d 674 (1984), the United States Supreme Court set forth the standard for obtaining relief on grounds of ineffectiveness of counsel:

A convicted defendant's claim that counsel's assistance was so defective as to require reversal of a conviction or death sentence has two components. First, the defendant must show that counsel's performance was...

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25 practice notes
  • Lambrix v. State, No. SC16–8
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • March 9, 2017
    ...the summary denial, concluding that even taking all of Lambrix's allegations as true, there was no prejudice.2 Lambrix v. State , 534 So.2d 1151, 1153–54 (Fla. 1988). The dissent asserted that an evidentiary hearing should have been held. Id. at 1154 (Kogan, J., dissenting). Lambrix also fi......
  • Lambrix v. Sec'y, No. 13–11917.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (11th Circuit)
    • June 26, 2014
    ...alcoholism. The Florida Supreme Court affirmed the state trial court's denial of Lambrix's post-conviction motion. See Lambrix v. State, 534 So.2d 1151, 1154 (Fla.1988). In particular, the Florida Supreme Court concluded that Lambrix's ineffective-trial-counsel claims failed on the merits b......
  • Lambrix v. Singletary, 965658
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • May 12, 1997
    ...Florida courts denied his repeated efforts to obtain collateral relief, Lambrix v. Dugger, 529 So.2d 1110 (Fla.1988); Lambrix v. State, 534 So.2d 1151 (Fla.1988); Lambrix v. State, 559 So.2d 1137 (Fla.1990), Lambrix filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §2254 in......
  • Lambrix v. Sec'y, Fla. Dep't of Corr., No. 16-10251
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (11th Circuit)
    • March 15, 2017
    ...motion on the merits of every claim. Id. Lambrix appealed this ruling, but the Florida Supreme Court affirmed. See Lambrix v. State , 534 So.2d 1151, 1154 (Fla. 1988).Lambrix filed a counseled petition for a writ of habeas corpus in the Florida Supreme Court, and also filed a pro se habeas ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
25 cases
  • Lambrix v. Sec'y, No. 13–11917.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (11th Circuit)
    • June 26, 2014
    ...alcoholism. The Florida Supreme Court affirmed the state trial court's denial of Lambrix's post-conviction motion. See Lambrix v. State, 534 So.2d 1151, 1154 (Fla.1988). In particular, the Florida Supreme Court concluded that Lambrix's ineffective-trial-counsel claims failed on the merits b......
  • Lambrix v. Singletary, 965658
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • May 12, 1997
    ...Florida courts denied his repeated efforts to obtain collateral relief, Lambrix v. Dugger, 529 So.2d 1110 (Fla.1988); Lambrix v. State, 534 So.2d 1151 (Fla.1988); Lambrix v. State, 559 So.2d 1137 (Fla.1990), Lambrix filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §2254 in......
  • Lambrix v. State, No. SC16–8
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • March 9, 2017
    ...the summary denial, concluding that even taking all of Lambrix's allegations as true, there was no prejudice.2 Lambrix v. State , 534 So.2d 1151, 1153–54 (Fla. 1988). The dissent asserted that an evidentiary hearing should have been held. Id. at 1154 (Kogan, J., dissenting). Lambrix also fi......
  • Lambrix v. Sec'y, Fla. Dep't of Corr., No. 16-10251
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (11th Circuit)
    • March 15, 2017
    ...motion on the merits of every claim. Id. Lambrix appealed this ruling, but the Florida Supreme Court affirmed. See Lambrix v. State , 534 So.2d 1151, 1154 (Fla. 1988).Lambrix filed a counseled petition for a writ of habeas corpus in the Florida Supreme Court, and also filed a pro se habeas ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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