FROM THE PULASKI COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, FOURTH DIVISION [NO.
60CR-16-1477] HONORABLE HERBERT WRIGHT, JUDGE.
William R. Simpson, Jr., Public Defender, by: Clint Miller,
Deputy Public Defender, for appellant.
Rutledge, Att'y Gen., by: Rachel Kemp, Ass't
Att'y Gen., and Sharnea Y. Diggs, Law Student Admitted to
Practice Pursuant to Rule XV of the Rules Governing Admission
to the Bar of the Supreme Court under the Supervision of
Darnisa Evans Johnson, Deputy Att'y Gen., for appellee.
F. VIRDEN, JUDGE.
Pulaski County jury convicted appellant Roscoe Fletcher of
aggravated-residential burglary, theft of property, and
aggravated robbery. The jury sentenced him as a habitual
offender to an aggregate term of forty years'
imprisonment. Each sentence was enhanced twelve months for
use of a firearm, with the enhancements running concurrently
with each other but consecutively with the underlying
offenses for an aggregate prison term of forty-one years.
Fletcher does not challenge the sufficiency of the evidence
to support his convictions for aggravated-residential
burglary and aggravated robbery. Rather, he argues that the
trial court erred in denying his directed-verdict motion on
the theft-of-property conviction because the State failed to
prove that he threatened to inflict serious physical injury
on the victim. We affirm.
Wilson testified that on the evening of March 20, 2016, he
was visiting his friend, Cassyophis "Meeka"
Williams, when two men-a younger man with dreadlocks and an
older man-entered Williams's residence wearing masks and
carrying guns. Wilson said that he immediately recognized the
older man as someone he knew from the neighborhood as
"Skeet, " and he identified Fletcher as that man at
trial. Wilson testified that Fletcher had a sawed-off,
double-barreled, 12-gauge shotgun and that Fletcher had
cocked it and demanded money. Wilson stated that Fletcher had
the shotgun pointed at him with his finger on the trigger. He
testified that Fletcher had ordered him to remove his clothes
and ordered the younger man to take Wilson's wallet.
According to Wilson, they took his identification and twenty
or thirty dollars.
moving for a directed verdict on the charge of theft of
property, defense counsel argued, "In the light most
favorable to the State[, ] Mr. Wilson testified that a young
black male with dreads took his property, and there is no
proof that there was any threat given or any purpose of
serious physical injury." The trial court denied the
motion, and the jury returned its verdict of guilty.
Standard of Review
treat a motion for a directed verdict as a challenge to the
sufficiency of the evidence. Horton v. State, 2017
Ark.App. 481, 530 S.W.3d 880. We view the evidence in the
light most favorable to the State and consider only the
evidence that supports the verdict. Id. We affirm a
conviction if substantial evidence exists to support it.
Id. Substantial evidence is that which is of
sufficient force and character that it will, with reasonable
certainty, compel a conclusion one way or the other, without
resorting to speculation or conjecture. Id.
Theft of Property
person commits theft of property if he or she knowingly
obtains the property of another person by deception or by
threat with the purpose of depriving the owner of the
property. Ark. Code Ann. § 5-36-103(a)(2) (Repl. 2013).
Theft of property is a Class B felony if the property is
obtained by the threat of serious physical injury to any
person. Ark. Code Ann. § 5-36-103(b)(1)(B).
"Threat" means a menace, however communicated, to
cause physical injury to any person or to commit any other
criminal offense. Ark. Code Ann. § 5-36-101(11)(A)(i).
"Serious physical injury" means physical injury
that creates a substantial risk of death or that causes
protracted disfigurement, protracted impairment of health, or
loss or protracted impairment of the function of any bodily
member or organ. Ark. Code Ann. § 5-1-102(21).
argues that the State's evidence was insufficient for
three reasons: (1) Wilson did not testify that Fletcher
verbally threatened to inflict serious physical injury on
him, (2) Wilson did not testify that Fletcher pumped or
cocked the sawed-off shotgun that he pointed at him or that
he saw Fletcher's finger on the shotgun's trigger,
and (3) Wilson did not specifically testify ...