Lee v. State, No. BL-351

CourtCourt of Appeal of Florida (US)
Writing for the CourtZEHMER
Citation508 So.2d 1300,12 Fla. L. Weekly 1498
Decision Date17 June 1987
Docket NumberNo. BL-351
Parties12 Fla. L. Weekly 1498 Sylvester O'Neal LEE, Appellant, v. STATE of Florida, Appellee.

Page 1300

508 So.2d 1300
12 Fla. L. Weekly 1498
Sylvester O'Neal LEE, Appellant,
v.
STATE of Florida, Appellee.
No. BL-351.
District Court of Appeal of Florida,
First District.
June 17, 1987.

Michael E. Allen, Public Defender, and Glenna Joyce Reeves, Asst. Public Defender, Tallahassee, for appellant.

Jim Smith, Atty. Gen., and Gary L. Printy, Asst. Atty. Gen., Tallahassee, for appellee.

ZEHMER, Judge.

Sylvester O'Neal Lee appeals his conviction and sentence on multiple charges of

Page 1301

kidnapping, sexual battery with a deadly weapon, robbery with a firearm, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony. We find it necessary to reverse for the erroneous admission of collateral crime evidence.

The evidence at trial established that around 3:00 a.m. on December 13, 1983, the victim and two male friends were seated in a Camaro automobile in the Panama City area when appellant approached them with a handgun. A short struggle ensued and appellant put a towel over the victim's head and drove the car away with the victim in it. After driving for about forty-five minutes, appellant stopped the car and forced the victim to perform oral sex upon him, and then compelled the victim to have sexual intercourse with him. Appellant left the victim in the wooded area, and she eventually contacted law enforcement authorities. The results of her examination and testing with a rape kit revealed the presence of seminal fluid stains on her clothing and established the presence of semen of the blood group O, PGM type 1, which was consistent with appellant. Latent fingerprints found on the car and on a checkbook inside the car were identified as appellant's. At trial, the victim and her two friends, one of whom had known appellant previously, identified appellant as the person who committed the offenses. The state was permitted to present, over appropriate defense objections, testimony by three bank tellers who identified appellant as the participant in a bank robbery the following afternoon in Tallahassee.

Appellant first contends that the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress the victims's out-of-court and in-court identification of appellant. We find no merit to this contention.

Next, appellant contends the trial court reversibly erred in admitting the evidence of appellant's participation in the bank robbery. The fact that appellant committed the bank robbery in Tallahassee shortly after the victim's abduction in Panama City, appellant argues, served no purpose other than to prejudice the jury against him; there were no identifiable points of similarity pervading the compared factual situations, and the facts neither had some special characteristics nor were so unusual as to point to defendant as the perpetrator of the charged offense. See Thompson v. State, 494 So.2d 203 (Fla.1986). Appellant contends that the testimony relating to the bank robbery does not fit within the rule of admissibility set forth in Williams v. State, 110 So.2d 654 (Fla.), cert. denied, 361 U.S. 847, 80 S.Ct. 102, 4 L.Ed.2d 86 (1959), or section 90.404(2), Florida Statutes (1985), and that the admission of such evidence constituted reversible error.

The state answers appellant's argument in one page as follows:

In Heiney v. State, 447 So.2d 210 (Fla.1984), the court approved the admission of collateral crime evidence citing Smith v. State, 365 So.2d 704 (Fla.1978), for "establishment of the entire context out of which the criminal action occurred." Id. at 213, 214. See also Ruffin v. State, 397 So.2d 277 (Fla.), cert. denied, 454 U.S. 882, 102 S.Ct. 368, 70 L.Ed.2d 194 (1981); and Tumulty v. State, 489 So.2d 150 (Fla. 4th DCA 1986). Thus, the fact that Appellant stole a car that was driven to Tallahassee and used in the commission of an armed bank robbery less than ten (10) hours later, not only established the context of the crime, but was also relevant to rebut the anticipated alibi defense that the Appellant had never been near the car. See Cotitia [Cotita] v. State, 381 So.2d 1146 (Fla. 1st DCA 1980), and Dodson v. State, 344 So.2d 305 (Fla. 1st DCA 1976).

The evidence was clearly relevant to link Appellant to the Camaro and, therefore, was properly admitted.

The supreme court has held that "among the other purposes for which a collateral crime may be admitted under Williams is establishment of the entire context out of which the criminal action occurred." Heiney v. State, 447 So.2d at 213-14; Smith v. State, 365 So.2d 704 (Fla.1978), cert. denied, 444 U.S. 885, 100 S.Ct. 177, 62 L.Ed.2d 115 (1979). We conclude, however, that the testimony relating to the Tallahassee

Page 1302

bank robbery was not admissible under that test. We are unable to perceive any factual connection between the two offenses that would relate the robbery to the several offenses under review and permit the jury to find that the circumstances surrounding the robbery in Tallahassee tended to prove any essential element of the Panama City offenses. Contrary to the assertion in the state's brief quoted above, there was no testimony or other evidence presented at trial which linked the stolen Camaro found in Tallahassee to the bank robbery. Nothing in this record...

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11 practice notes
  • Thompson v. State, s. 90-1107
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • February 19, 1993
    ...beyond a reasonable doubt, reversal of Staton's conviction is required. Ciccarelli v. State, 531 So.2d 129 (Fla.1988); Lee v. State, 508 So.2d 1300 (Fla. 1st DCA 1987), approved, 531 So.2d 133 III. WILLIAMS RULE EVIDENCE THOMPSON The state introduced as Williams 8 rule evidence the testimon......
  • Williams v. State, No. 95-100
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • November 8, 1995
    ...on the victim's testimony, the improper admission must be considered harmful and appellant is entitled to a new trial. See Lee v. State, 508 So.2d 1300 (Fla. 1st DCA 1987), aff'd, 531 So.2d 133 (Fla.1988); Garrette v. State, 501 So.2d 1376 (Fla. 1st DCA 1987); Wilson v. State, 490 So.2d 106......
  • Kelvin v. State, No. 91-2627
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • December 30, 1992
    ...therefore decline to conclude that the jury was not influenced by the error. Ciccarelli v. State, 531 So.2d 129 (Fla.1988); Lee v. State, 508 So.2d 1300 (Fla. 1st DCA 1987), approved, 531 So.2d 133 5 The parties characterized this as Williams rule evidence, yet there is nothing similar abou......
  • Lowery v. State, No. 91-2962
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • December 16, 1992
    ...that the error was harmless, in that it made no such argument on appeal, see Ciccarelli v. State, 531 So.2d 129 (Fla.1988); Lee v. State, 508 So.2d 1300 (Fla. 1st DCA 1987), approved, 531 So.2d 133 (Fla.1988), we reverse appellant's conviction and remand the case for new REVERSED and REMAND......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
11 cases
  • Thompson v. State, s. 90-1107
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • February 19, 1993
    ...beyond a reasonable doubt, reversal of Staton's conviction is required. Ciccarelli v. State, 531 So.2d 129 (Fla.1988); Lee v. State, 508 So.2d 1300 (Fla. 1st DCA 1987), approved, 531 So.2d 133 III. WILLIAMS RULE EVIDENCE THOMPSON The state introduced as Williams 8 rule evidence the testimon......
  • Williams v. State, No. 95-100
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • November 8, 1995
    ...on the victim's testimony, the improper admission must be considered harmful and appellant is entitled to a new trial. See Lee v. State, 508 So.2d 1300 (Fla. 1st DCA 1987), aff'd, 531 So.2d 133 (Fla.1988); Garrette v. State, 501 So.2d 1376 (Fla. 1st DCA 1987); Wilson v. State, 490 So.2d 106......
  • Kelvin v. State, No. 91-2627
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • December 30, 1992
    ...therefore decline to conclude that the jury was not influenced by the error. Ciccarelli v. State, 531 So.2d 129 (Fla.1988); Lee v. State, 508 So.2d 1300 (Fla. 1st DCA 1987), approved, 531 So.2d 133 5 The parties characterized this as Williams rule evidence, yet there is nothing similar abou......
  • Lowery v. State, No. 91-2962
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • December 16, 1992
    ...that the error was harmless, in that it made no such argument on appeal, see Ciccarelli v. State, 531 So.2d 129 (Fla.1988); Lee v. State, 508 So.2d 1300 (Fla. 1st DCA 1987), approved, 531 So.2d 133 (Fla.1988), we reverse appellant's conviction and remand the case for new REVERSED and REMAND......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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