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Brown v. State

Supreme Court of Delaware

December 1, 2014

CHRISTOPHER BROWN, Defendant Below, Appellant,
v.
STATE OF DELAWARE, Plaintiff Below, Appellee

Submitted October 28, 2014

Case Closed December 17, 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 New Castle County. Cr. ID No. 1212017553.

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

ORDER

Karen L. Valihura, Justice

This 1st day of December 2014, upon consideration of the appellant's Supreme Court Rule 26(c) brief, the State's response, and the record below, it appears to the Court that:

(1) On October 3, 2013, after a three day trial, a Superior Court jury found the appellant, Christopher Brown, guilty of Burglary in the Second Degree, Criminal Trespass in the First Degree as a lesser included offense of Burglary in the Second Degree, Criminal Impersonation, two counts of Criminal Mischief, Theft, and Resisting Arrest. On February 27, 2014, the Superior Court found that Brown was a habitual offender and sentenced Brown as follows: (i) for Burglary in the Second Degree, ten years of Level V incarceration; (ii) for Criminal Trespass in the First Degree, one year of Level V incarceration; (iii) for Criminal Impersonation, one year of Level V incarceration suspended for one year of Level III probation; (iv) for one count of Criminal Mischief, thirty days of Level V incarceration; (v) for the other count of Criminal Mischief, thirty days of incarceration suspended for one year of Level III probation; (vi) for Theft, one year of Level V incarceration suspended for one year of Level III probation; and (vii) for Resisting Arrest, one year of Level V incarceration suspended for one year of Level III probation. This is Brown's direct appeal.

(2) On appeal, Brown's appellate counsel (" Counsel" ) filed a brief and a motion to withdraw pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 26(c) (" Rule 26(c)" ).[1] Counsel asserts that, based upon a complete and careful examination of the record, there are no arguably appealable issues. By letter, Counsel informed Brown of the provisions of Rule 26(c) and provided Brown with a copy of the motion to withdraw and the accompanying brief. Counsel also informed Brown of his right to identify any points he wished this Court to consider on appeal.

(3) Brown has raised two issues for this Court's consideration. First, he contends that the State failed to establish that he had the necessary intent to commit Burglary in the Second Degree. Second, he contends that the jury verdict sheet he received did not include an instruction for Criminal Trespass in the First Degree as a lesser included offense of the second count of Burglary in the Second Degree. The State has responded to the issues raised by Brown and moved to affirm the Superior Court's judgment.

(4) When reviewing a motion to withdraw and an accompanying brief, this Court must: (i) be satisfied that defense counsel has made a conscientious examination of the record and the law for arguable claims; and (ii) conduct its own review of the record and determine whether the appeal is so totally devoid of at least arguably appealable issues that it can be decided without an adversary presentation.[2]

(5) At trial, the State offered evidence relating to two break-ins.[3] Shortly before 1 p.m. on December 28, 2012, Mary Campese was alone in her home in the 800 block of Woodlawn Avenue when she heard someone repeatedly ring the doorbell. Campese looked outside a window and did not recognize the man at the door. Campese was not expecting anyone and did not answer the door. She did set her alarm system.

(6) After setting the alarm, Campese looked outside again and did not see the man at the door. She looked outside other windows and saw the man in the backyard looking at the door to the basement. She ...


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