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State v. Brinkley

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Ninth District, Summit

April 5, 2017

STATE OF OHIO Appellee
v.
JURMAINE K. BRINKLEY Appellant

         APPEAL FROM JUDGMENT ENTERED IN THE COURT OF COMMON PLEAS COUNTY OF SUMMIT, OHIO CASE No. CR 15 12 3742

          JASON D. WALLACE, Attorney at Law, for Appellant.

          SHERRI BEVAN WALSH, Prosecuting Attorney, and HEAVEN DIMARTINO, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, for Appellee.

          DECISION AND JOURNAL ENTRY.

          THOMAS A. TEODOSIO J.

         {¶1} Appellant, Jurmaine K. Brinkley, appeals his conviction and sentence from the Summit County Court of Common Pleas, finding him guilty of aggravated robbery with a firearm specification, and sentencing him to a total of thirteen years. This Court affirms.

         I.

         {¶2} Mr. Brinkley was arrested and charged with aggravated robbery with a firearm specification stemming from the robbery of a convenience store on November 16, 2015. The case went to trial and the jury found Mr. Brinkley guilty. The trial court sentenced Mr. Brinkley to ten years for the offense of aggravated robbery and imposed a mandatory three-year sentence on the firearm specification to run consecutively as required by law. Mr. Brinkley now appeals, raising four assignments of error, which have been reordered for the purpose of discussion.

         II.

         ASSIGNMENT OF ERROR THREE

         THE TRIAL COURT ERRED AS A MATTER OF LAW BECAUSE THE STATE FAILED TO ESTABLISH ON THE RECORD THAT THERE WAS SUFFICIENT EVIDENCE TO SUPPORT A CONVICTION.

         ASSIGMENT OF ERROR ONE

         APPELLANT'S CONVICTION WAS CONTRARY TO THE MANIFEST WEIGHT OF THE EVIDENCE AND THE JURY LOST ITS WAY WHEN IT FOUND THE APPELLANT GUILTY.

         {¶3} In his third assignment of error, Mr. Brinkley argues the trial court erred when it overruled his Crim.R. 29 motion for acquittal and submitted the case to the jury for deliberations. In his first assignment of error, Mr. Brinkley argues the manifest weight of the evidence does not support his conviction. We disagree with both arguments. The Court notes that Mr. Brinkley does not challenge the fact that an aggravated robbery occurred, but rather disputes that he was the offender.

         Factual Background

         {¶4} Shortly after midnight on November 16, 2015, Mr. Brinkley entered a convenience store, walked down an aisle, and left soon thereafter without purchasing anything. Mr. Brinkley lived with his siblings and their grandmother about a three-minute walk away from the store. Approximately twenty minutes later, a man dressed in black entered the store, pointed a gun at the cashier's face, and demanded that she put the register money in a bag he was holding. The man was dressed in black, his face covered by black fabric and his head covered by the hood of his sweatshirt. The cashier opened the registers and put the money in the bag as instructed. After the gunman left, the police were called.

         {¶5} At trial, the cashier testified that she knew Mr. Brinkley by sight, though not by name, as he had come into the store a few times before. She denied ever having a conversation with Mr. Brinkley, or ever hearing his voice, but said that she had approximately four prior interactions with him. On the night of the robbery, the cashier was working alone, and had asked one of the regular customers to stay with her while Mr. Brinkley was in the store because of feeling a "weird vibe."

         {¶6} The cashier testified that the gunman was wearing fishnet-like hosiery over his head and a black hood with drawstrings. She said that his voice was not familiar to her. She stated that although she could not see his hair, she could still see his face through the hosiery, and recognized him as the regular customer who had been in the store earlier that night, who was later identified as Mr. Brinkley. Although she was looking down for much of her interaction with the gunman, she testified that she had no doubt that it was Mr. Brinkley and that he was holding a gun. The cashier estimated the gunman's height as between six feet to six feet and four inches. Mr. Brinkley testified that his actual height was six feet and three inches. The cashier later identified Mr. Brinkley from a police photograph array, and identified Mr. Brinkley in the courtroom at trial.

         {¶7} Mr. Brinkley's grandmother testified that she has had custody of her grandson since he was two or three years old and that he lives with her and his siblings within walking distance of the convenience store. After she had learned of the robbery and that the police were looking for her grandson, she arranged to watch the store surveillance video from that night. She gave a written statement to the police, produced as evidence by the prosecution, which provided: "I watched the video at the [convenience store] and that is my grandson, Jurmaine Brinkley. The video was the robbery of [the store]." She further testified that Mr. Brinkley did not return home after the morning of November 16, and that she did not know his whereabouts for one or two days, until she was informed that he was in Michigan. Upon being shown the video at trial, the grandmother testified that she was not sure if the gunman was her grandson. Upon cross-examination, she testified that she had been mistaken when she gave her statement to the police, and that it was not her grandson in the video.

         Sufficiency ...


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