Sandifer v. State, A12A1581.

CourtUnited States Court of Appeals (Georgia)
Citation318 Ga.App. 630,734 S.E.2d 464
Docket NumberNo. A12A1581.,A12A1581.
Decision Date19 November 2012

318 Ga.App. 630
734 S.E.2d 464


No. A12A1581.

Court of Appeals of Georgia.

Nov. 19, 2012.

William Marcus Ermine, for Appellant.

Gregory Warren Winters, Dorothy Vinson Hull, for Appellee.

[734 S.E.2d 465]

BRANCH, Judge.

[318 Ga.App. 630]Following a jury trial, Darryl Lamar Sandifer was convicted on five counts of aggravated child molestation,1 four counts of child molestation,2 and two counts of enticing a child for indecent purposes. 3 He now appeals the denial of his motion for a new trial, asserting that the court below erred in: (1) refusing to allow his sister to remain in the courtroom for the testimony of Sandifer's two victims; and (2) allowing the State to introduce similar transaction evidence, even though its notice regarding those similar transactions failed to specify the exact purpose for which that evidence would be introduced. We find no error and affirm.

[318 Ga.App. 631]1. Viewed in the light most favorable to the verdict,4 the record shows that Sandifer repeatedly molested two young boys over an approximately two year period. The boys were between the ages of six and ten when the abuse occurred, and they were aged nine and eleven at the time of Sandifer's trial. At the request of the State and pursuant to OCGA § 17–8–545, the trial court cleared the courtroom of spectators, other than the immediate family members of each of the victims, during the victims' testimony. Among the spectators required to leave was Sandifer's sister, with whom he resided. When the judge asked defense counsel if he had any objection to clearing the courtroom, Sandifer's lawyer responded: “No, Your honor. My client brings a good point up. The other people that are being excluded [from the courtroom] are his family.” The judge responded: “Yeah. I know that, but that doesn't change the fact [that they need to leave.]” Sandifer now contends that the trial court's refusal to allow his sister to remain in the courtroom during the victims' testimony violated both his constitutional right to a public trial and OCGA § 17–8–54. We find no reversible error.

As an initial matter, it appears that Sandifer has waived this claim of error. Specifically, when asked by the court if Sandifer objected to removing all spectators other than the victims' families from the courtroom defense counsel responded, “No.” Although the lawyer went on to point out that Sandifer's family members were among those being excluded, he did not state any objection based on either Sandifer's constitutional right to a public trial or the relevant statute. Sandifer therefore waived his right to argue these grounds as reversible error. Craven v. State, 292 Ga.App. 592, 593–594(1)(b), 664 S.E.2d 921 (2008) (in child molestation case, defendant waived his claim that court below violated his right to a public trial by excluding his family from court during the testimony of the victim, where he failed to raise that claim until after the victim had testified); Hunt v. State, 268 Ga.App. 568...

To continue reading

Request your trial
3 cases
  • Davis v. State, A13A0703.
    • United States
    • United States Court of Appeals (Georgia)
    • July 16, 2013
    ...from the courtroom for the duration of the victim's testimony, Davis has waived this issue by failing to object. Sandifer v. State, 318 Ga.App. 630, 631(1), 734 S.E.2d 464 (2012). Moreover, even assuming that Davis had preserved this objection, the trial court's decision to remove Davis's f......
  • Spikes v. State, A19A1706
    • United States
    • United States Court of Appeals (Georgia)
    • January 21, 2020
    ...that a trial court need not engage in the Waller analysis before closing the courtroom under OCGA § 17-8-53.4 In Sandifer v. State , 318 Ga. App. 630, 632 (1), 734 S.E.2d 464 (2012), we determined that the defendant was not harmed by the trial court’s decision to remove the defendant’s sist......
  • Pub. Sch. Ret. Sys. of Ga. v. Ayers, A12A0797.
    • United States
    • United States Court of Appeals (Georgia)
    • November 19, 2012
    ...the case is over, so the earlier denial of summary judgment to appellant will not affect the proceedings below, and is therefore moot.734 S.E.2d 464 (Emphasis omitted.) Weir v. Kirby Constr. Co., 213 Ga.App. 832, 836(4), 446 S.E.2d 186 (1994).Judgment reversed. ADAMS and McFADDEN, JJ., conc......

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT