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Evans v. State

Supreme Court of Delaware

August 19, 2014

AUGUSTUS H. EVANS, JR., Defendant-Below, Appellant,
v.
STATE OF DELAWARE, Plaintiff-Below, Appellee

Submitted June 9, 2014

Motion for Rehearing en Banc filed 9/24/14; Denied 9/26/14. Case Closed September 29, 2014.

Editorial Note:

This decision has been designated as "Table of Decisions Without Published Opinions." in the Atlantic Reporter.

Court Below: Superior Court of the State of Delaware in and for Sussex County. Cr. ID No. 0609011528A.

Before STRINE, Chief Justice, HOLLAND and RIDGELY, Justices.

ORDER

Leo E. Strine, Jr. Chief Justice

This 19th day of August 2014, it appears to the Court that:

(1) The appellant, Augustus H. Evans, Jr., filed this appeal from the Superior Court's order dated April 23, 2014 denying his third motion for postconviction relief under Superior Court Criminal Rule 61 (" Rule 61" ). After Evans filed his opening brief on appeal, the appellee, State of Delaware, filed a motion to affirm the Superior Court judgment under Supreme Court Rule 25 (" Rule 25" ).[1]

(2) In July 2007, a Superior Court jury convicted Evans of several criminal offenses related to his September 2006 confrontations with a rival drug dealer in Seaford and a police officer in Laurel. On direct appeal, we affirmed Evans' convictions and sentence.[2] We also affirmed the denial of Evans' first and second motions for postconviction relief.[3]

(3) The following excerpt from our decision on direct appeal provides a context for the claims raised by Evans in this appeal.

The evidence presented at trial fairly established that within a ten to twelve hour period, i.e. from Saturday evening, September 16, 2006 through Sunday morning, September 17, 2006, Evans was involved in two gun incidents. The first incident occurred Saturday night in Seaford, Delaware, when Evans fired three shots at a rival drug dealer, William Witherspoon, hitting Witherspoon once in the left thigh. The second incident occurred Sunday morning in Laurel, Delaware, when Evans pointed a gun at Officer Charles Campbell of the Laurel Police Department.
Evans was arrested on September 17, 2006, for the Laurel incident. Two days later, while in custody pursuant to the Laurel arrest, Evans was interviewed by Seaford Police Lieutenant Richard Jamison about the Seaford incident. During that videotaped interview, which was played for the jury at trial, Evans essentially admitted to shooting Witherspoon.[4]

(4) Evans' opening brief repeats, verbatim, the claims raised in his third postconviction motion. Fairly summarized, Evans' claims entitled " Entitlement to Voluntariness Instruction," " Self-Incrimination," and " Pretrial Detentioners" concern the self-incriminating statements he made to Lieutenant Jamison.[5] Evans' claim entitled " Veracity Challenge/Franks Evidentiary Hearing" concerns the denial of his pretrial request for an evidentiary hearing challenging his arrest on the Laurel charges. Finally, in a claim entitled " Judicial Bias/Abuse of Discretion," Evans alleges that the ...


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