State v. Moore, 110519 NCCA, COA 19-247

Docket Nº:COA 19-247
Opinion Judge:YOUNG, JUDGE.
Party Name:STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA v. MONTDREKUS LAMONT MOORE, Defendant.
Attorney:Attorney General Joshua H. Stein, by Assistant Attorney General Stuart (Jeb) M. Saunders, for the State. Appellate Defender Glenn Gerding, by Assistant Appellate Defender, Katy Dickinson-Schultz, for defendant-appellant.
Judge Panel:Judges DIETZ and INMAN concur.
Case Date:November 05, 2019
Court:Court of Appeals of North Carolina
 
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STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA

v.

MONTDREKUS LAMONT MOORE, Defendant.

No. COA 19-247

Court of Appeals of North Carolina

November 5, 2019

An unpublished opinion of the North Carolina Court of Appeals does not constitute controlling legal authority. Citation is disfavored, but may be permitted in accordance with the provisions of Rule 30(e)(3) of the North Carolina Rules of Appellate Procedure.

Heard in the Court of Appeals 16 October 2019.

Appeal by defendant from judgments entered 12 June 2018 by Judge Lisa C. Bell in Mecklenburg County Superior Court No. 16 CRS 243664, 32663.

Attorney General Joshua H. Stein, by Assistant Attorney General Stuart (Jeb) M. Saunders, for the State.

Appellate Defender Glenn Gerding, by Assistant Appellate Defender, Katy Dickinson-Schultz, for defendant-appellant.

YOUNG, JUDGE.

This appeal arises from convictions for first-degree murder and possession of a firearm by a felon. We find that the trial court conducted a sufficient inquiry into Defendant's complaints about his counsel, and that those complaints did not establish that Defendant's counsel was ineffective. We also find that the trial court did not err in denying Defendant's request for an instruction on second-degree murder. Therefore, we affirm the decision of the lower court.

I. Factual and Procedural History

On 22 November 2016, Montdrekus Lamont Moore ("Defendant") had an altercation with his girlfriend. His girlfriend's daughter, Christina Shields ("Shields"), lived with them, and was inside at the time of the altercation. Shields' boyfriend, Christian Mojica ("Mojica"), was waiting for her outside the home. When Shields went outside, Defendant followed her, and Mojica asked what was going on. Mojica tried to diffuse the situation but did not act aggressively. Defendant then told Shields he was going to Cookout and asked if she wanted any food. Shields said no. Defendant left in his vehicle, while Shields and Mojica left walking toward the laundromat. As they were walking, Defendant pulled his vehicle close to Shields and Mojica and shot Mojica. Mojica was deceased when police arrived.

Beginning on 28 March 2017, Defendant wrote letters to the trial court complaining that his attorney did not allow him to inspect and examine the discovery in his case. Defendant also wrote a letter to his attorney stating that he did not feel comfortable with the attorney's representation and asked the attorney to recuse himself from the case. On 24 July 2017, Defendant filed a pro se Motion to Relieve Counsel as Ineffective and a Motion to Appoint New Counsel. On 17 August...

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