Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

09/23/87 BENJAMINE SAYLES v. STATE INDIANA

Filed: September 23, 1987.

BENJAMINE SAYLES, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT,
v.
STATE OF INDIANA, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE



Appeal from the Marion Superior Court1, The Honorable Roy F. Jones, Judge, Cause No. CR86-077E.

Ratliff, C.j., Robertson, J. and Hoffman, J., concur.

Author: Ratliff

RATLIFF, C.J.

STATEMENT OF THE CASE

Benjamine Sayles appeals from the Marion Superior Court his convictions for Intimidation, a class D felony, and Resisting Law Enforcement, a class A misdemeanor, and respective sentences of four (4) years and one (1) year, to be served consecutively. We affirm.

FACTS

Officer Thomas Veza of the Indianapolis Police Department was part of an undercover investigation of "peashake gambling" (a form of lottery which uses baseball scores) at the General Motors plant in Indianapolis. Officer Veza posed as a construction worker at the plant. On the evening of February 12, 1986, Officer Veza sat at a table in the G.M. plant's cafeteria/break area. Benjamine Sayles confronted Officer Veza and exclaimed that Officer Veza was a policeman. Officer Veza denied Sayles's accusation. Later, Officer Veza went to the restroom. Sayles followed and again told Officer Veza that he knew Veza was a policeman. Sayles warned Officer Veza not to buy peashake tickets, threatened Officer Veza, and demanded that Officer Veza show identification. Officer Veza refused to show his identification. Sayles then struck and pushed Officer Veza. A scuffle broke out, but was stopped by a third party.

After the restroom brawl, Officer Veza returned to the cafeteria/break-area. Officer Veza told Charles Froman, a plant employee, of the incident. Froman stated his opinion and suggested that, "he's a punk, don't worry about him. If I were you I'd go over there and throw those tickets right in his face. Don't let him intimidate you or push you around." Record at 298. Officer Veza bought eleven (11) baseball lottery tickets, walked over to Sayles and dropped the tickets in front of Sayles's face. Sayles again attacked and struck Officer Veza. Blows were exchanged. During the second altercation, Sayles removed a knife from his pocket and attempted to cut Officer Veza. As the fight was stopped, Sayles again threatened Officer Veza and suggested that they continue in the parking lot.

Officer Veza did not accept Sayles's parking lot invitation. Instead, Officer Veza returned to the police station to report the preceding events. An arrest warrant was issued and officers were sent to the G.M. plant to arrest Sayles. Dennis Knigga, a plant supervisor, and Larry Browning, a plant security advisor, approached Sayles to escort him to a plant security office for questioning and arrest. Upon seeing Knigga and Browning, Sayles fled. Eventually, Sayles was apprehended, arrested and charged with Intimidation, a class C felony, Criminal Recklessness, a class D felony, and Resisting Law Enforcement, a class D felony. The jury acquitted Sayles of criminal recklessness, but convicted Sayles of Intimidation, as a class D felony, and Resisting Law Enforcement, as a class A misdemeanor.

ISSUES

Sayles presents four (4) issues which we rephrase as follows:

1. Whether sufficient evidence exists to support Sayles's convictions for Intimidation, a class D felony, and Resisting Law Enforcement, a class A misdemeanor.

2. Whether the convictions are contrary to law due to inconsistent jury verdicts.

3. Whether the court erred in denying Sayles's motion for mistrial when Officer Veza testified as to photographs used to verify Sayles's identity which were later entered into the record but not viewed by the jury.[Footnote 2]

4. Whether the court erred in sentencing Sayles to an aggravated sentence without making findings of mitigating circumstances.

Discussion AND DECISION

Issue One

Sayles first argues that insufficient evidence exists to support his convictions. When reviewing for sufficiency of the evidence we follow a strict standard of review. We will uphold the conviction if substantial evidence of probative value exists to support each element of the conviction beyond a reasonable doubt. Fleck v. State (1987), Ind., 508 N.E.2d 539, 540; Fox v. State (1987), Ind., 506 N.E.2d 1090, 1097. We neither reweigh the evidence nor Judge witness credibility, and only view that evidence which supports the verdict. Fleck, at 540; Fox, at 1097. Furthermore, a conviction may be supported by the uncorroborated testimony of the victim or by circumstantial evidence alone. Manyfield v. State (1987), Ind., 509 N.E.2d 810, 811; King v. State (1987), Ind., 508 N.E.2d 1259, 1262; Tam v. State (1987), Ind. App., 507 N.E.2d 993, trans. denied.

In the present case, Sayles was convicted of Intimidation and Resisting Law Enforcement. Indiana Code section 35-45-2-1 provides for the crime of Intimidation, as follows:

"(a) A person who communicates a threat to another person, with the intent that:

(1) The other person engage in conduct against his will; or

(2) The other person be placed in fear of retaliation for a prior lawful act; commits ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.