State v. Buckmon, No. 25375.

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of South Carolina
Citation555 S.E.2d 402,347 S.C. 316
Docket NumberNo. 25375.
PartiesThe STATE, Respondent, v. Michael Paul BUCKMON, Appellant.
Decision Date13 November 2001

347 S.C. 316
555 S.E.2d 402

The STATE, Respondent,
v.
Michael Paul BUCKMON, Appellant

No. 25375.

Supreme Court of South Carolina.

Heard September 27, 2001.

Decided November 13, 2001.


347 S.C. 318
Attorney General Charles M. Condon, Chief Deputy Attorney General John W. McIntosh, Assistant Deputy Attorney General Donald J. Zelenka, and Assistant Attorney General Derrick K. McFarland, all of Columbia, and Solicitor Barbara R. Morgan, of Aiken, for respondent

Deputy Chief Attorney Joseph L. Savitz, III, and Assistant Appellate Defender Eleanor Duffy Cleary, of the South Carolina Office of Appellate Defense, of Columbia, for appellant.

Justice MOORE.

Appellant appeals his convictions for murder, attempted armed robbery, and criminal conspiracy. We affirm in part and reverse in part.

347 S.C. 319
FACTS

One December night, around 10:00 p.m., the unresponsive body of Minh Chapman (the victim) was found. The victim's body was found in the driver's seat of her car, which was parked outside the China Express Restaurant where she was manager. The victim's purse, containing approximately $1,400 of the restaurant's receipts, was beside her on the front car seat. After the police and rescue squad arrived, the victim was transported to the hospital. Initially, because there was no evidence of violence at the scene, she was thought to have suffered a heart attack. Later it was determined she had died from a single gunshot wound to the chest.

At trial, the fingerprint expert testified he was unable to positively identify anyone in this case.1 No fingerprints were discovered on a spent shell casing found near the car. Further, no fingerprints were found on a .25 caliber semi-automatic pistol the police recovered from the home of the mother of Maurice Benning, one of appellant's co-defendants. The firearms examiner testified the fired shell casing found at the scene came from the pistol that was recovered. However, the examiner could not conclusively determine whether the .25 caliber bullet recovered from the victim's body had been fired by the recovered pistol.

A witness, Shirley Collins, testified she saw three people, sometime between 9:55 p.m. and 10:05 p.m., crossing the road in front of her while driving on the night of the murder. She testified the three people, whose race and sex she could not identify, were wearing dark clothes and were traveling in the direction of the China Express.

Temetrius Williams testified she drove appellant, Tunzy Sanders, and Benning around on the night of the murder. She drove them to a parking lot near the China Express to drop them off, but since it was raining they decided not to stay. She then drove the three to Jermaine Walker's house. She could not remember what they were wearing.2

347 S.C. 320
Previously, Temetrius had made a statement to police which consisted of the following: When she arrived at appellant's house, appellant said he would bring her some money. She agreed to drive appellant, Sanders, and Benning, who were wearing black clothes and carrying walkie-talkies, to town. She parked her car at the House of Pizza, where they exited the car and then returned shortly thereafter. Upon returning, Benning stated, "Y'all can use it but please return it because it ain't mine." Thereafter, she dropped them off at Walker's house around 7:50 p.m. During this time, they said, "we're going to get some cheese tonight." In her statement, Temetrius told the police that cheese meant money

Maurice Odom, who was imprisoned at the time, testified solely for the purpose of impeaching Temetrius. He testified he informed the police Temetrius had told him appellant had placed a gun to her head the night of the victim's murder and that all three men were wearing black clothes.

Jermaine Walker testified Temetrius dropped appellant, Sanders, and Benning off at his house. He stated the three had on "regular like blue jeans and shirts, dark clothes." Walker testified they stayed until about 9:30 or 10:00 p.m. While there, they stated they were going to "get a lick," which he took to mean there was going to be a burglary or a robbery. He could not remember who made that comment. When they left, Walker testified, they stated they were going to a friend's house and they walked in the direction of the China Express, which is the same direction in which the friend lived. Walker further stated that appellant also lived in that same direction.

A cellmate of Benning testified he and Benning discussed the China Express crime.3 He testified Benning told him the following: (1) there were two pistols, (2) he was "out to get paid that night," (3) he was the look-out, (4) he said take her out if necessary, (5) he ran after the victim was shot, (6) he kept his mother's gun but threw the other gun away, (7) a few other places had been "cased" that night but without luck.4

347 S.C. 321
Two other jailhouse informants testified about conversations they had with Sanders concerning the China Express crime. Both informants testified Sanders told them he planned to rob the victim and had shot and killed the victim. The testimony was only considered as it related...

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50 practice notes
  • State v. Sims, No. 4371.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • 17 de abril de 2008
    ...means an object that is neither criminal nor unlawful." State v. Gunn, 313 S.C. 124, 133-134, 437 S.E.2d 75, 80 (1993); State v. Buckmon, 347 S.C. 316, 323, 555 S.E.2d 402, 405 (2001); Pinion ex rel. Montague v. Pinion, 363 S.C. 564, 566, 611 S.E.2d 271, 272 (Ct.App.2005); State v. Crocker,......
  • State v. Moore, No. 4247.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • 18 de maio de 2007
    ...accused or from which guilt may be fairly and logically deduced. State v. Walker, 349 S.C. 49, 562 S.E.2d 313 (2002); State v. Buckmon, 347 S.C. 316, 555 S.E.2d 402 (2001); State v. Al-Amin, 353 S.C. 405, 411, 578 S.E.2d 32, 35 (Ct.App.2003); see also State v. Martin, 340 S.C. 597, 533 S.E.......
  • United States v. Garcia-Santana, No. 12–10471.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • 15 de dezembro de 2014
    ...; R.I. Gen. Laws § 11–1–6 ; Rhode Island v. Disla, 874 A.2d 190, 197 (R.I.2005) ; S.C.Code Ann. § 16–17–410 ; South Carolina v. Buckmon, 347 S.C. 316, 555 S.E.2d 402, 405 (2001) ; Va.Code Ann. § 18.2–22 ; Gray v. Virginia, 260 Va. 675, 537 S.E.2d 862, 865 (2000).5 The precise language of th......
  • United States v. Garcia-Santana, No. 12–10471.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • 15 de dezembro de 2014
    ...R.I. Gen. Laws § 11–1–6; Rhode Island v. Disla, 874 A.2d 190, 197 (R.I.2005); S.C.Code Ann. § 16–17–410; South Carolina v. Buckmon, 347 S.C. 316, 555 S.E.2d 402, 405 (2001); Va.Code Ann. § 18.2–22; Gray v. Virginia, 260 Va. 675, 537 S.E.2d 862, 865 (2000). 5. The precise language of the Cod......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
50 cases
  • State v. Sims, No. 4371.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • 17 de abril de 2008
    ...means an object that is neither criminal nor unlawful." State v. Gunn, 313 S.C. 124, 133-134, 437 S.E.2d 75, 80 (1993); State v. Buckmon, 347 S.C. 316, 323, 555 S.E.2d 402, 405 (2001); Pinion ex rel. Montague v. Pinion, 363 S.C. 564, 566, 611 S.E.2d 271, 272 (Ct.App.2005); State v. Crocker,......
  • State v. Moore, No. 4247.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of South Carolina
    • 18 de maio de 2007
    ...accused or from which guilt may be fairly and logically deduced. State v. Walker, 349 S.C. 49, 562 S.E.2d 313 (2002); State v. Buckmon, 347 S.C. 316, 555 S.E.2d 402 (2001); State v. Al-Amin, 353 S.C. 405, 411, 578 S.E.2d 32, 35 (Ct.App.2003); see also State v. Martin, 340 S.C. 597, 533 S.E.......
  • United States v. Garcia-Santana, No. 12–10471.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • 15 de dezembro de 2014
    ...; R.I. Gen. Laws § 11–1–6 ; Rhode Island v. Disla, 874 A.2d 190, 197 (R.I.2005) ; S.C.Code Ann. § 16–17–410 ; South Carolina v. Buckmon, 347 S.C. 316, 555 S.E.2d 402, 405 (2001) ; Va.Code Ann. § 18.2–22 ; Gray v. Virginia, 260 Va. 675, 537 S.E.2d 862, 865 (2000).5 The precise language of th......
  • United States v. Garcia-Santana, No. 12–10471.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • 15 de dezembro de 2014
    ...R.I. Gen. Laws § 11–1–6; Rhode Island v. Disla, 874 A.2d 190, 197 (R.I.2005); S.C.Code Ann. § 16–17–410; South Carolina v. Buckmon, 347 S.C. 316, 555 S.E.2d 402, 405 (2001); Va.Code Ann. § 18.2–22; Gray v. Virginia, 260 Va. 675, 537 S.E.2d 862, 865 (2000). 5. The precise language of the Cod......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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