People v. Bleakley

CourtNew York Supreme Court Appellate Division
Citation509 N.Y.S.2d 874,125 A.D.2d 687
PartiesThe PEOPLE, etc., Respondent, v. Timothy BLEAKLEY and Jeffrey J. Anesi, Appellants.
Decision Date31 December 1986

Patrick M. Wall, New York City (Oren Root, Jr., of counsel), for appellants.

Carl A. Vergari, Dist. Atty., White Plains (Richard L. Hecht, Maryanne Luciano and Anthony J. Servino, of counsel), for respondent.



APPEALS by defendants from two judgments (one as to each of them), of the County Court, Westchester County (West, J.), both rendered November 7, 1985, convicting them of rape in the first degree (two counts), sodomy in the first degree and sexual abuse in the first degree, upon jury verdicts, and imposing sentence.

ORDERED that the judgments are affirmed, and the matter is remitted to the County Court, Westchester County, for further proceedings pursuant to CPL 460.50(5) with respect to the defendant Anesi.

The underlying judgments of conviction arise out of a sexual assault which occurred during the early morning hours of March 29, 1985, in Westchester County. The complainant testified that during the late evening hours of the previous day, March 28, 1985, she was with her girlfriend at a local bar known as the "824". After consuming a drink, the complainant and her girlfriend left the 824 and went to another local bar. The two women had a few drinks at the bar and then returned to the 824 at approximately 3:00 A.M. Upon her return to the 824, the complainant met a male friend named Russell who asked if she was interested in "dosome coke". The complainant said that she was and about an hour later Russell told her, "Come on, we got some coke * * * Let's take a ride". The complainant accompanied him to the parking lot where she was introduced to the defendants, both of whom had also come out of the bar. Russell told the complainant that the defendants were "the ones that have the coke". The complainant did not know either of the defendants prior to that time. The group then got into the defendant Bleakley's car and drove to an area in the vicinity of the Hudson River.

After the group parked on Sixth Street near the river, Bleakley took cocaine out of his pocket. At that time, Russell gave Bleakley $20. The four occupants of the car snorted the cocaine. Thereafter, they drove back to the 824.

Both the complainant and Russell testified at the trial that when they returned to the 824, Russell began to exit the car first. When the complainant started to get out of the car Bleakley grabbed her hair and pulled her back into the car. Bleakley then sped out of the parking lot causing Russell, who was still partially in the car, to fall to the ground. As they drove away, Anesi climbed into the front seat of the car, thereby positioning the complainant between himself and Bleakley.

When the car stopped in a wooded area, Bleakley threatened the complainant as the two men tore her clothes off. The complainant tried to get out of the car but Bleakley grabbed her and forced her to perform sodomy upon him. Meanwhile, Bleakley continued to pull on the complainant's hair. Thereafter Anesi climbed into the back seat of the car as Bleakley pushed the complainant down on the front seat and raped her. During the rape, the complainant's head struck the passenger door several times.

A few minutes later, Bleakley got out of the car as Anesi climbed into the front seat and raped the complainant. Thereafter Bleakley, who was outside the car, pulled the complainant out of the car onto the ground. The two defendants then raped her again. Then the men threw the complainant's clothes at her and told her to get dressed. The complainant begged the defendants to take her back to her car which was parked at the 824. At trial, the complainant testified that she got in the car and, while en route to the bar, Bleakley dropped Anesi off at his house. When they arrived at the parking lot, Bleakley told the complainant, "If you go to the cops you're dead", and then kicked her out of the car.

After the defendants left, the complainant got into her car and drove to her boyfriend's house but he was not at home. She then called her boyfriend at work and asked for help. Her boyfriend met the complainant outside the 824 bar and she proceeded to tell him about the attack. He observed that the complainant was hysterical and was crying. According to the boyfriend, he told the complainant that she should go to the police; however, he did not offer her any assistance and returned to work. In contrast, the complainant testified that he told her to go home, take a shower and go to work.

After her boyfriend left, the complainant went home, took a shower and went to work. At work, the complainant felt sick and was unable to concentrate. Upon returning home, she took valium and slept until the following morning. When she awoke, the complainant called her girlfriend and told her that she was bleeding from the vagina. Her girlfriend and her boyfriend picked the complainant up and brought her to the hospital. While at the hospital, the police interviewed the complainant and she told them about the rapes and sodomy. She explained that she had not gone to the police earlier because she was scared.

At trial, the medical testimony of the nurse and the physician who had treated the complainant at the hospital indicated that the complainant had not suffered from any bruises, lacerations or cuts. The physician stated that the pelvic examination of the complainant produced normal results although the examination did reveal the presence of sperm in her vagina. A forensic examination of the clothes worn by the complainant on the day of the attack also established the existence of sperm on her blouse, slacks and pantyhose. Samples of hair recovered from the front seat of Bleakley's car were tested and were found to be similar to the complainant's head hair.

Bleakley was eventually arrested on April 1, 1985, at which time his car was seized. After being advised of his Miranda rights, Bleakley told the arresting officer that he had spent the evening in question with two friends and was home at approximately 3:00 A.M. Bleakley also stated that he had not been at the 824 bar for a couple of weeks.

While Bleakley was being transported to the county jail later that day, the officer stopped at a nearby delicatessen to purchase a sandwich for Bleakley. When the officer pulled into the parking lot, Bleakley's father and his attorney were standing outside the store talking to Anesi. Anesi ran away when the officer exited his car. He eventually surrendered to police several days later. After being advised of his Miranda rights, Anesi asked the arresting officer how he could be arrested "based on one person's say-so". When he was told that corroboration existed, Anesi inquired: "How could anybody corroborate it when there was no one else there". At trial, Anesi conceded the voluntariness of these statements.

Sometime after the felony hearing was held on the charges against the defendants, the complainant was in the 824 bar when she was approached by Anesi who asked to speak with her. The two then sat down at a table, and the complainant asked: "Why didn't you get help. Why didn't you help me". In response, Anesi offered to testify against Bleakley and say that Bleakley raped the complainant provided that she did not implicate him. Anesi explained that his relationship with his girlfriend and his family life was ruined. The complainant refused to accept Anesi's offer.

Both the defendants testified at trial. Anesi stated that while he and Bleakley were at the 824 bar during the early morning hours of March 29, 1985, they were approached by Russell who knew a girl who "wants to go out and she'll do anything you want with her". Anesi and Bleakley then went out in the parking lot with Russell and met the complainant. The four then drove to a secluded area and snorted cocaine. When they returned to the parking lot of the bar, both defendants testified that Russell got out of the car and said good night. The complainant then invited Anesi to the front seat of the car as Bleakley drove to a wooded area.

Once they parked the car, the complainant allegedly told the defendants that she would only have sex with one of them. Anesi then got into the back seat of the car while the complainant and Bleakley engaged in intercourse. After the complainant and Bleakley got dressed, Anesi got back into the front seat and they drove back to the bar. While en route, the complainant allegedly asked Bleakley for $1,000. According to Bleakley, he told the complainant that he would meet her at the 824 the following evening and give her money.

Anesi acknowledged that when he observed the complainant at the 824 several weeks after the incident he approached her and asked to speak with her. Anesi told the complainant that she was causing a lot of trouble by claiming that she had been raped. According to Anesi, the complainant responded: "I don't know why I'm doing this".

The jury found both the defendants guilty of two counts of rape in the first degree based upon the attacks which occurred on the front seat of the car, as well as sodomy in the first degree and sexual abuse in the first degree. The defendants were acquitted of the two remaining counts of rape in the first degree concerning the attacks which allegedly occurred outside the car.

On appeal, the defendants maintain that their guilt of the charged crimes was not proven beyond a reasonable doubt. Primarily the defendants focus on certain discrepancies in the complainant's testimony regarding the alleged attacks, the absence of medical evidence indicating the use of force or coercion on the complainant, as well as the complainant's failure to contact the police immediately after the attacks. Although certain inconsistencies concededly exist in the evidence...

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5 cases
  • People v. Slater
    • United States
    • New York Supreme Court Appellate Division
    • 25 Octubre 1990
    ...that the jury failed to properly weigh the evidence (see, People v. Bleakley, 69 N.Y.2d 490, 515 N.Y.S.2d 761, 508 N.E.2d 672, revg 125 A.D.2d 687, 509 N.Y.S.2d Finally, we note that defendant failed to preserve for our review the issue of repugnancy of the verdict. In cases tried before a ......
  • People v. Cooper
    • United States
    • New York Supreme Court Appellate Division
    • 1 Febrero 1990
    ...that the jury failed to properly weigh the evidence (see, People v. Bleakley, 69 N.Y.2d 490, 515 N.Y.S.2d 761, 508 N.E.2d 672, revg 125 A.D.2d 687, 509 N.Y.S.2d Defendant's final contention, that the maximum sentence of 5 to 15 years in prison is excessive and an abuse of discretion, is unp......
  • People v. Bleakley
    • United States
    • New York Court of Appeals
    • 7 Mayo 1987
    ...another chance" (Staff Comment to Proposed CPL 240.40, at 328 [1967] ). This case presents a new difficulty. The Appellate Division (125 A.D.2d 687, 509 N.Y.S.2d 874 [2d Dept], lv. granted 69 N.Y.2d 744, 512 N.Y.S.2d 1047, 505 N.E.2d 246) was divided as to whether its review power was limit......
  • People v. Bleakley
    • United States
    • New York Supreme Court Appellate Division
    • 6 Junio 1988 CPL 440.10 to vacate the judgments rendered November 7, 1985. After the judgments were affirmed by this court ( People v. Bleakley, 125 A.D.2d 687, 509 N.Y.S.2d 874), the case was remitted to this court by the Court of Appeals for further proceedings ( People v. Bleakley, 69 N.Y.2d 490, ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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