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State v. Dennis

Superior Court of Delaware, Sussex

July 1, 2014

State
v.
Marcus Dennis

Submitted: June 12, 2014

Alexander Funk, Esquire Curley & Benton 20 Beiser Boulevard, Robert Robinson, Esquire Office of the Public Defender, Melanie Withers, Esquire Department of Justice

MOTION FOR POSTCONVICTION RELIEF DATE

T. HENLEY GRAVES RESIDENT JUDGE

Dear Mr. Dennis & Counsel:

On October 21, 2013 Marcus Dennis ("Dennis") filed a Motion for Postconviction Relief pursuant to Superior Court Criminal Rule 61. ("Rule 61").

Alexander Funk, Esquire ("Mr. Funk") was appointed to represent Dennis. Mr. Funk requested additional time to review investigation and amend the Motion. The extension of time was granted.

On May 14, 2014 Mr. Funk filed a Motion to Withdraw pursuant to Rule 61(e)(2). By correspondence to the Court and to Dennis, Mr. Funk made Dennis aware that he had thirty (30) days to respond, in writing, to the Motion to Withdraw. Dennis has not filed anything with the Court.

BACKGROUND

Dennis and his girlfriend, Tonya Carpenter, ("Carpenter"), were charged with a home invasion and robbery of a Ralph Short, age 78, and his wife, Linda Short, age 63. He was convicted following a jury trial on March 12, 2012 of Robbery in the First Degree, Burglary in the Second Degree, and Wearing a Disguise During a Felony. He was sentenced to a total of 30 years Level V suspended after 11 years and the successful completion of the Key Program for Level 4 Crest and 8 years of Level 3.

That Court notes that upon being arrested and learning that his co-defendant, Carpenter, had admitted that she and Dennis had robbed the victims, Dennis then confessed.

DIRECT APPEAL ISSUES

Dennis claimed prosecutorial misconduct involving the dropping of charges against Mr. Short at the beginning of his trial.[1] The Supreme Court found no prosecutorial misconduct.[2]

Dennis claimed that the prosecutor deliberately elicited false identification evidence from Mr. Short.[3] At trial, Mr. Short testified in error that he had previously identified Dennis as the robber.[4] The immediate defense objection was sustained and the jury was instructed to disregard the erroneous testimony.[5] The Supreme Court found that Dennis suffered no prejudice.[6]

Dennis claimed that the arrest and search warrants lacked probable cause.[7]Upon a review of the search warrant affidavit and arrest warrant affidavit, the Supreme ...


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