U.S. v. Crim, No. 75--1117

CourtUnited States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (10th Circuit)
Writing for the CourtBefore BREITENSTEIN, HILL and BARRETT; BARRETT
Citation527 F.2d 289
PartiesUNITED STATES of America, Appellee, v. Robert Lawrence CRIM, a/k/a Robert L. Crim, Appellant.
Decision Date29 March 1976
Docket NumberNo. 75--1117

Page 289

527 F.2d 289
UNITED STATES of America, Appellee,
v.
Robert Lawrence CRIM, a/k/a Robert L. Crim, Appellant.
No. 75--1117.
United States Court of Appeals,
Tenth Circuit.
Argued Nov. 11, 1975.
Decided Dec. 8, 1975.
Certiorari Denied March 29, 1976.
See 96 S.Ct. 1497.

Page 291

E. Edward Johnson, U.S. Atty., District of Kansas, Topeka, Kan., for appellee.

Frank M. Rice, Topeka, Kan., for appellant.

Before BREITENSTEIN, HILL and BARRETT, Circuit Judges.

BARRETT, Circuit Judge.

Robert Lawrence Crim (Crim) appeals his jury conviction of issuing checks in violation of 18 U.S.C.A. § 2314. 1

Crim was indicted on two counts:

On or about May 25, 1973, - - - ROBERT LAWRENCE CRIM - - - wilfully, unlawfully and knowingly and with fraudulent intent, - - - caused to be transported in interstate commerce - - - a falsely made, - - - security - - - Check No. 119 dated May 25, 1973, in the amount of $180.00, payable to Robert L. Crim, purportedly signed by Richard B. Cole, - - -.

On or about September 20, 1973, - - - ROBERT LAWRENCE CRIM - - - wilfully, unlawfully and knowingly and with fraudulent intent, - - - caused to be transported in interstate commerce - - - a falsely made, - - - security, - - - Check No. 135 dated September 20, 1973, in the amount of $86.00, payable to Robert L. Crim, purportedly signed by Richard B. Cole, - - -.

The Government's case relied on the testimony of four principal witnesses:

Cornelius F. Cole (Cole), a utility clerk for City National Bank and Trust Company (Bank) of Kansas City, Missouri, testified and presented evidence that: Crim, using the alias of 'R. Bob Cole', along with several other people, opened an account at Bank on December 11, 1970, under the name of the Committee of Concerned citizens (Committee); checks written on the account required the signatures of the Committee's two

Page 292

coordinators, 'Allen Wilson' and 'R. Bob Cole'; the two checks at issue herein were the only checks written on the Committee's account containing one drawer signature only; and, that the account was closed on October 29, 1971, by the Bank after four 'insufficient funds' checks had been returned in March of 1971. Cole further testified that notice of the account's closure was effectuated in the Bank's normal manner, but that he was unable to state categorically that notice of closure was actually received. He identified numerous checks drawn on the account prior to its closure signed by 'R. Bob Cole' and 'Allen Wilson'. He identified the Committee checks involved herein which were made after the account had been closed for more than one year and a half, made payable to 'Robert L. Crim' and signed by 'Richard B. Cole, President.'

James C. Codigan, a handwriting expert and special agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, testified that he had examined numerous handwriting exemplars of Crim; that he had compared the writing on the two checks in question; and that, in his expert opinion, Crim had written both checks and had also endorsed 'Robert L. Crim' on each of them.

Donald Rasch identified Crim as the person for whom he had cashed the Count I check for $180.00 on May 27, 1973.

Martha Goff identified Crim as the person for whom she had cashed the Count II check for $86.00 on September 20, 1973.

In each instance Crim represented or identified himself to be 'Robert L. Crim', the payee designate of the checks, and he endorsed the checks in that name.

Crim did not testify. However, several defense witnesses did testify relative to Crim's usage of the name 'R. Bob Cole' and of the establishment of the Committee.

Allen Wilson testified that Crim had been hired as 'Bob Cole' to direct a summer youth program in Kansas City, Missouri, in 1970; that Crim pursuant to his employment was issued identification cards under the name of 'Cole'; that Crim, using the name 'Cole' was involved in the formation of the Committee; that he and Crim were the coordinators for the Committee; and that Bank was directed to send the Committee's 'checks, notices and so forth' to Crim's home in Kansas City which served as the Committee headquarters. Wilson stated that 'naturally all information concerning it (Committee's account with Bank) went back to' Crim's address.

On cross-examination Wilson testified that he knew Crim by the name of 'Crim' when they were both prisoners at a diagnostic center in 1965; that he had no knowledge as to the status of the Committee in 1973; and that he was not prepared to introduce evidence establishing that the authorization to withdraw funds from Committee's account had been changed from two designated persons to one.

Fran Wilson, wife of Allen, testified that she knew Crim as 'Cole', that she occasionally went to Committee meetings, and that the Committee's headquarters were at Crim's house.

Shirley Crim, appellant's estranged wife, testified that when she first met appellant he had used the name 'Crim'; that she and Crim 'had been together' for six years; that he had assumed the name of 'Cole' because he had had some problems with a family in Omaha; that while they were living in Kansas City in 1969--1970 he was using the name 'Cole'; that during their stay in Kansas City they had a son whom they named 'Bobby Crim'; that she was not aware that the Committee account had been closed; and that she had some knowledge of the Committee's account but she did not know if a deposit had been made to it during the 1971--1973 period after they departed Kansas City.

On appeal Crim contends that: (1) the Trial Court erred in failing to grant his motion for a bill of particulars; (2) as a

Page 293

matter of law there was not a falsely made or forged security; (3) the Trial Court erred in refusing to allow the introduction of evidence relative to the number of signatures required on the Committee's check; (4) the Trial Court erroneously allowed the introduction of evidence concerning his criminal record; (5) he was denied a fair trial because of publicity surrounding the Trial Judge; and (6) he was denied a fair trial because the Trial Court failed to provide adequate funds for an investigator.
I

Crim contends that the Trial Court erred in refusing to grant his motion for a bill of particulars. Crim argues that as a result of this denial 'he was not sufficiently informed of the nature and cause of the accusation and therefore could not properly prepare his defense.' We hold that the indictment was sufficiently definite to adequately apprise Crim of the charges against him. United States v. Baca, 494 F.2d 424 (10th Cir. 1974).

Crim summarily alleges that the indictment was inadequate. He has not, however, established that there were problems of surprise, vagueness, or indefiniteness. Fed.R.Crim.P., Rule 7(c), 18 U.S.C.A., requires, inter-alia, that the indictment 'shall be a plain, concise and definite written statement of the essential facts constituting the offense charged.' We hold that the indictment met legal requirements. Absent prejudice the denial of a motion for a bill of particulars is not error. In United States v. Smaldone, 484 F.2d 311 (10th Cir. 1973), cert. denied, 415 U.S. 915, 94 S.Ct. 1411, 39 L.Ed.2d 469 (1974), we noted:

There was no problem of surprise and no problem of vagueness or indefiniteness. Defendant was apprised of the charge against him and was not prejudiced in the preparation of his defense. 484 F.2d at 320.

Crim has completely failed to show any prejudice to his defense because the indictment did not list the details of each count with greater specificity. Sufficiency is determined by practical rather than technical...

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17 practice notes
  • U.S. v. Tashjian, Nos. 79-1447
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (1st Circuit)
    • September 30, 1981
    ...evidence of conscious deception." United States v. Pearlstein, 576 F.2d 531, 535 (3d Cir. 1978); United States v. Crim, 527 F.2d 289, 294 (10th Cir. 1975). Such an inference becomes compelling in light of the evidence that Campbell manipulated aliases as a tool of deception. We conclud......
  • Lackey v. State, No. 61094
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of Texas. Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas
    • April 7, 1982
    ...cases cited by appellant, a substantial sum was allocated and used by the defendant for expert testimony. See United States v. Crim, 527 F.2d 289 (10th Cir. 1975), cert. denied 425 U.S. 905, 96 S.Ct. 1497, 47 L.Ed.2d 755 (1976). In that case, the Tenth Circuit rejected a defendant's claim t......
  • U.S. v. Jaynes, Nos. 95-6009
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (10th Circuit)
    • February 5, 1996
    ...evidence. See id. Signing a check in a name other than one's real name tends to establish fraudulent intent. United States v. Crim, 527 F.2d 289, 294 (10th Cir.1975), cert. denied, 425 U.S. 905, 96 S.Ct. 1497, 47 L.Ed.2d 755 Although Ms. Jaynes testified that she honestly thought she was en......
  • U.S. v. Sparrow, No. 78-2017
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (10th Circuit)
    • January 10, 1980
    ...security in this manner states no federal offense under Section 2314. 216 F.2d at p. 763. Sparrow also cites to our United States v. Crim, 527 F.2d 289 (10th Cir. 1975), Cert. denied, 425 U.S. 905, 96 S.Ct. 1497, 47 L.Ed.2d 755 (1976), as supportive of his position. We disagree. In Crim, su......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
17 cases
  • U.S. v. Tashjian, Nos. 79-1447
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (1st Circuit)
    • September 30, 1981
    ...evidence of conscious deception." United States v. Pearlstein, 576 F.2d 531, 535 (3d Cir. 1978); United States v. Crim, 527 F.2d 289, 294 (10th Cir. 1975). Such an inference becomes compelling in light of the evidence that Campbell manipulated aliases as a tool of deception. We conclud......
  • Lackey v. State, No. 61094
    • United States
    • Court of Appeals of Texas. Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas
    • April 7, 1982
    ...cases cited by appellant, a substantial sum was allocated and used by the defendant for expert testimony. See United States v. Crim, 527 F.2d 289 (10th Cir. 1975), cert. denied 425 U.S. 905, 96 S.Ct. 1497, 47 L.Ed.2d 755 (1976). In that case, the Tenth Circuit rejected a defendant's claim t......
  • U.S. v. Jaynes, Nos. 95-6009
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (10th Circuit)
    • February 5, 1996
    ...evidence. See id. Signing a check in a name other than one's real name tends to establish fraudulent intent. United States v. Crim, 527 F.2d 289, 294 (10th Cir.1975), cert. denied, 425 U.S. 905, 96 S.Ct. 1497, 47 L.Ed.2d 755 Although Ms. Jaynes testified that she honestly thought she was en......
  • U.S. v. Sparrow, No. 78-2017
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (10th Circuit)
    • January 10, 1980
    ...security in this manner states no federal offense under Section 2314. 216 F.2d at p. 763. Sparrow also cites to our United States v. Crim, 527 F.2d 289 (10th Cir. 1975), Cert. denied, 425 U.S. 905, 96 S.Ct. 1497, 47 L.Ed.2d 755 (1976), as supportive of his position. We disagree. In Crim, su......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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